World TVET Database - Country Profiles

The World Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Database is an online repository developed by UNESCO-UNEVOC, aimed at providing concise, reliable and up-to-date information on TVET systems worldwide.

The Country Profiles are the result of a collaboration between UNESCO-UNEVOC and the TVET stakeholders in each country, particularly the UNEVOC Network Members. These also include collaborations with regional stakeholders, such as SEAMEO-VOCTECH for 11 countries in South East Asia.

We are in the process of updating the information provided in the Country Profiles for all Member States. The updated Country Profiles will be made available on an ongoing basis.

Contributing to the World TVET Database

Should you wish to support the development of a profile for your country, or have feedback on the content and structure of the database, please contact us at unevoc.tvetprofiles(at)

To access a report, please click on the PDF signs below. Some reports are also available in French (FR), Spanish (SP), Chinese (CH) or Arabic (AR).

(NOTE: The newly launched Country Profiles are currently only available in English. The translated versions of these profiles will be published shortly.)

For any comments or feedback, please feel free to get in touch with us at unevoc.tvetprofiles(at)

Please click on any of the column headers below to sort by the respective value.


TVET Country Profile
1. TVET mission
2. System
3. Governance and financing
4. TVET teachers and trainers
5. Qualifications
6. Projects
7. Statistical information
8. Links
9. References
published: 2019-03-21

1. TVET mission, legislation and national policy or strategy

TVET mission

TVET in Nigeria is seen as a tool for combating poverty and unemployment. Given the shortage of qualified manpower especially in technical disciplines, TVET is believed to be one of the main priorities that will greatly contribute to the socio-economic development of the country.

TVET legislation

The National Policy on Education implemented in 1977 and most recently revised in 2004 describes main priorities and ways to achieve them for all aspects of Nigerian education system.

Decree 9 of 1977 establishes the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE), the main coordinating body for TVET in Nigeria.

A number of decrees and acts regulate various aspects of education including TVET in Nigeria.

Decree № 17 formally inaugurated in 1991 establishes the National Commission for Mass Literacy, Adult and Non-formal education.

The Education National Minimum Standards and Establishment of Institutions Decree № 16 of 1985 together with the Constitution of 1999, empowers the Ministry of Education to ensure that minimum standards are established, maintained and constantly improved in all schools of the federation. The Federal Inspectorate Service (FIS) Department and other bodies of the Ministry bear the responsibility of ensuring uniformity of standards in schools and colleges.

The same Decree № 16 vested the NBTE with the powers of maintenance of standards in Nigerian technical Institution. This power is exercised through a variety of quality assessment processes including visitations for Resource Inspection and Accreditation.

The TRCN Decree № 31 establishes the Teachers Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN), which became operational in June 2000.


  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Nigeria. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.

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    2. TVET formal, non-formal and informal systems

Scheme compiled by UNESCO-UNEVOC.

Formal TVET system

Upon completion of basic education and successful passing of the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE)/Junior Secondary Examination, the students may chose to proceed to one of the following 4 study tracks:

  • Senior secondary school
  • Technical college
  • Out-of-school vocational training
  • Apprenticeship scheme
  • Vocational Enterprise Institutions (VEIs) and Innovation Enterprise Institutions (IEIs) – institutions supported by the private sector and are occupation-specific. They started to operate in 2007/2008.
Entrance requirements to each of the study tracks are based on the results of BECE and determine academic ability, aptitude and vocational interest.

Senior secondary education has 3 main goals, which are:

  • To offer a diversified curriculum applicable for people with different abilities and opportunities;
  • To provide trained manpower in applied sciences, technology and commerce at the sub-professional grade; and
  • To prepare potential middle level manpower for higher education and relevant professions and specialisation in line with national needs.
Vocational subjects belong to the group of the core subjects in senior secondary education. They range from agriculture to typing or technical drawing and from bookkeeping to auto mechanics and woodwork.

The Nigerian education system distinguishes technical education and vocational education as 2 different sub-sectors. In general, institutions in the technical education sub-sector are of tertiary but non-university level and have the role of education middle-and technical-level manpower for commerce, industry, agriculture, health care and teaching.

Polytechnics, colleges of technology (mono-disciplinary tertiary colleges) and colleges of education all belong to the technical education sub-sector.

The main role of vocational education is to train low-level workforce, such as operatives, artisans, craftsmen and master craftsmen for commerce, industry, agriculture and ancillary services. This sub-sector includes technical colleges and vocational enterprise institutions. The duration of the programmes offered by vocational training centres is between 1 and 3 years, depending on the vocation.

After basic education technical colleges are the main alternative route to further formal education. However their number is quite low- under 200 colleges in comparison to 12 000 secondary schools.

Curriculum for technical and vocational courses is developed in collaboration with the experts from the industry, vocational educators from the polytechnics and universities, and ministry officials.

Technical students are introduced to metal work, woodwork, engineering drawing and basic electricity, before they specialise in any trade.

Technical Colleges also run programmes in clothing/textile technology, beauty culture trades, leather crafts, business/commercial crafts, etc.


  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Nigeria. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.

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    3. Governance and financing


Nigeria is a federation consisting of 36 states with a Federal Capital Territory in Abuja. Federal and State governments act as legislators and establish and manage in the sector of university, technological, professional and other post-primary education.

The federal level authorities are responsible for policy, curriculum, inspections, examinations, the management of schools and federal technical colleges belong to senior secondary education level.

The Federal government also bears responsibility over policy design, strategy and management of all federal-owned colleges of education, polytechnics and universities.

The Federal Ministry of Education is in charge of harmonising educational policies and procedures of all the states of the Federation. The Ministry consists of several units and the following departments: basic and secondary education (5 divisions); tertiary education (7 divisions); federal inspectorate service; human resources; finance and accounting; procurement; and policy planning, education management and research.

The Federal Inspectorate Service performs a number of functions such as: designing monitoring and evaluation instruments for measuring education quality and ensuring linkages with the Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council, the faculties of education, institutes of education and other national and international bodies on development in curriculum content, delivery and pedagogy practices as they apply to secondary technical and vocational education.

The National Board for Technical Education (NBTE) exists under the authority of the Federal Ministry of Education and was established in 1977 with the purpose of handling all aspects of technical and vocational education falling outside of university education.

“In addition to providing standardised minimum guide curricula for technical and vocational education and training (TVET), the Board supervises and regulates, through an accreditation process, the programmes offered by technical institutions at secondary and post secondary levels. It is also involved with the funding of Polytechnics owned by the Government of the Federation of Nigeria.” (NBET web-page, accessed 11 July 2012)

The higher policy-making body in educational matters in the country is the National Council of Education (NCE). It consists of the Federal Minister of Education and the State Commissioners for Education. Joint Consultative Committee (JCC) on Education assists NCE in its work. JCC consists of professional officers of the federal and state ministers of education.

The Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council was established in 1972. Its purpose is to develop curricula for use at all levels of the educational system in Nigeria. The role of the Council is limited to primary and secondary school curricula, but does not include higher education.

Another important body is the National Examinations Council that conducts examinations for some junior secondary schools and for senior secondary schools jointly in cooperation with the West African Examination Council. The National Business and Technical Examinations Board (NABTEB) administer technical and business examinations. Its mission is to effectively conduct Technical and Business Examinations, issue reliable and valid certificates with a view to meeting the needs of candidates who wish to use them for both academic progress and employment.

The National Commission for Colleges of Education is an advisory body for the Federal Ministry that coordinates all aspects of non-degree teacher education in the country.


The Federal Ministry of Education owns and funds a number of universities, polytechnics, technical college, colleges of education, and secondary schools, located in every state of the country. The rest of the tertiary institutions are owned and funded by the state governments, whereas some secondary schools are owned and funded by state governments, communities and private organisations.


  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Nigeria. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.
  • Webpage of the National Board for Training Education. Accessed: 11 July 2012.
  • Webpage of the National Business and Technical Examinations Board. Accessed: 16 July 2012.

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    4. TVET teachers and trainers

Teacher training is provided by the following institutions:

  • Teacher-training colleges
  • Colleges of Education
  • Universities
Admission to the above-mentioned institutions depends on the results of the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examinations (UTME).

The minimum qualification required for teaching in junior secondary schools and technical colleges is the Nigerian Certificate of Education (NCE) that is awarded upon completion of a 3-year programme. The programme is organised by the National Commission for Colleges of Education that is also in charge of college accreditation.

In order to teach at the senior secondary level, the Bachelor of Education degree or a single subject bachelor’s degree plus a postgraduate diploma in education is required. Besides that, holders of specialised qualifications like the national diplomas awarded by polytechnics can teach in secondary schools and technical colleges.

At least a Master degree is required for teaching in colleges of education, whereas a PhD is necessary in order to teach in Universities.

Generally, the Teachers’ Registration Council of Nigeria (TRCN) undertakes the accreditation of the courses and programmes of all establishments that prepare individuals intending to become teachers in Nigeria.

In 2007 TRCN began with the mandatory registration of all professionally qualified teachers. This action goes together with organising comprehensive training and in-service training seminars and workshops all over the country. The same organisation is also actively participating in qualifying unqualified teachers.


  • UNESCO-IBE (2011). World Data on Education VII Ed. 2010/11. Nigeria. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.

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    5. Qualifications and qualifications frameworks

Secondary vocational education

The following diplomas are awarded in Technical Colleges and Polytechnics:

  • Higher National Diploma (HND) in the following disciplines: Accountancy, Banking and Finance, Building Technology, Business Administration and Management, Civil Engineering Technology, Electrical Engineering Technology, Hospitality Management, Leisure and Tourism Management, Mechanical Engineering Technology, Office Technology and Management, Quantity Surveying, Science Laboratory technology Chemistry Option, Statistics;
  • National Diploma (ND) in the same disciplines as HND;
  • National Technical Certificate (NTC) in the following disciplines: Block Laying, Brick Laying and Concreting, Carpentry and Joinery, Electrical Installation and Maintenance Work, Fabrication and Welding, Foundry, Furniture Design and Construction, General Studies, Instrument Mechanics Works, Mechanical Engineering Craft, Motor Vehicle Mechanics’ Work, Painting and Decorating, Plumbing and Pipe Fitting, Radio, TV and Electronic Work, Refrigeration and Air-conditioning Work;
  • Advanced National Technical Certificate (ANTC) the same disciplines as in NTC.
National Qualifications Framework (NQF)

In December 2010 the National Steering Committee on National Vocational Qualifications Framework (NVQF) was set up by the Executive Secretary of the National Board for Technical Education (NBTE). Members of the Committee come from various Ministries, Departments and industry organisations. The purpose of the Committee is to come up with a draft National Vocational Qualifications Framework for Nigeria containing levels of attainment, level descriptors, quality assurance mechanism of qualifications, registration of training centres, and required legal framework and involvement of the industry.

The draft report of the Committee comprises 6 qualification levels:

Level 1: Entry Level or unskilled employees

Level 2: Foundation or basic skilled employees

Level 3: Operators or semiskilled employees

Level 4: Technicians, craft, skilled and supervisory employees

Level 5: Technical and junior management positions

Level 6: Professional engineers and senior management positions

NBTE and other key stakeholders of NVQF have partnered with International Labour Organisation (ILO) for the development of National Occupational Standards (NOS) in Nigeria.

Quality assurance

Programme accreditation involves the evaluation of the quality of a programme in relation to set standards. The four basic standards most considered by accrediting agencies are: the students, physical facilities, staff and funding. To these may be added the quality of teaching and learning, which is actually the interaction of the four standards in the implementation of the curricula.

Accreditation visit to a specific discipline is usually undertaken by a panel of experts in the professional, area drawn from the academia, industry, and relevant professional bodies, under NBTE’s coordination. The team normally uses the NBTE minimum guide curriculum and programme specifications, as the minimum reference, and the NBTE’s programmes evaluation form, as a guide.


  • Webpage of the National Board for Training Education. Accessed: 11 July 2012.
  • Webpage of the National Vocational Qualifications Framework. Accessed: 12 July 2012.

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    6. Current and ongoing reforms, projects, and challenges

Current reforms and major projects

In order to address the numerous issues confronting the TVET sector, various initiatives have recently been implemented, mostly in collaboration with national and international development partners such UNESCO, the World Bank, the ECOWAS Commission, etc.

Access to TVET is being expanded, concurrently with advancement of skills acquisition through provision of opportunities for PPP, expansion of facilities and equipment and development of teachers/trainers, as well as enhancing social esteem of the sector. Some of the initiatives include:

  • Introduction of the IEIs and VEIs to intensify private sector engagement and improve the relevance of the training to the job market, while providing popular means of skilling and re-skilling workforce;
  • Enhancement of Skills/Competence evaluation system by introducing National Vocational Qualifications Framework (NVQF);
  • Upgrading of training equipment and facilities in institutions, such as the upgrade of science and engineering laboratory and workshop equipment in 51 polytechnics, with intensive hands-on training for lecturers and technologies in 2010-12; and
  • Planned empowering of polytechnics to award their own degrees in their unique areas of core competence, so as to retain their essence, character and tradition.

Nigerian TVET is faced with a number of challenges. The image of TVET as education of the last resort despite the efforts of the government to change it still prevails. Another issue is the lack of efficient educational monitoring and evaluation procedures. Poor funding is also a great challenge preventing TVET system from coherent development. Teachers in Nigerian TVET are underestimated and there is a great lack of incentives provided for them. Another challenge is rapid technological growth that is hard to keep up with, which results in irrelevance of the curricula taught in TVET programmes.

Strongly established examination-oriented approach to curricula implementation is one more obstacle preventing Nigerian TVET from due development.


  • Oranu, R.N. (2001). Vocational and Technical Education in Nigeria. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.

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    7. Statistical information(*)

Population (Million)



Average yearly population growth rate 2005 - 2010

+2.66 %

For comparison:
Global average yearly population growth rate 2005-2010: 1.17%
69.14 70.68
female male  
78.22 80.20
female male  

49.45 %

49.38 %

Table compiled by UNESCO-UNEVOC based on UN ESA: World Population Prospects/ the 2010 revision

GDP per capita (currency: US$)




1 242

Table compiled by UNESCO-UNEVOC based on World Bank database

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8. Links to UNEVOC centres and TVET institutions

UNEVOC Centres

TVET Institutions

  • Federal Ministry of Education
  • National Commission for Polytechnics
  • National Steering Committee on National Vocational Qualifications Framework

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9. References, bibliography, abbreviations



  • ANTC - Advanced National Technical Certificate
  • BECE - Basic Education Certificate Examination
  • FIS - Federal Inspectorate Service
  • HND - Higher National Diploma
  • ILO - International Labour Organisation
  • JCC - Joint Consultative Committee
  • NBTE - National Board for Technical Education
  • NCE - National Council of Education
  • ND - National Diploma
  • NOS - National Occupational Standards
  • NTC - National Technical Certificate
  • NVQF - National Vocational Qualifications Framework
  • TRCN - Teachers Registration Council

    Published by: UNESCO-UNEVOC
    Publication Date: 2019-03-21
    Validated by: Dr. Amina Idris;
    Director, National Board for Technical Education, Centre of Excellence in TVET (NBTE)

page date 2018-10-26

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