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Top 10 Reasons Why Nigerians Choose To Study Abroad

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The appeal of studying abroad is strong for many Nigerian students. They view the prospect of education abroad not only as a chance to learn and grow but also as an opportunity to broaden their worldview and experience diverse cultures.

While the motivation of each student is unique, several factors consistently attract Nigerian students to universities abroad. 

Some of these factors may be rooted in personal circumstances, others reflect issues within Nigeria that the government has been slow to address.

So, in this blog post, we will address the top 10 reasons why Nigerians study abroad. 

Top 10 Reasons Why Nigerians Study Abroad

1. Frequent Strikes

In Nigeria, it is common for universities and polytechnics to go on strike for months at a time. 

This means that a student studying for a five-year course can end up spending seven or eight years in school, even if they are passing their exams. 

Students don't like spending more time in school than they have to, especially when it is not because of their academic performance. 

Strikes like these don’t happen as often in universities abroad, which is why many Nigerian students want to study abroad.

2. Standard and Quality of Education

The educational institutions in Nigeria do not have the funding and resources to meet the standards of top universities around the world

This means that the quality of education in Nigeria is often not as high compared to other countries. This can be disappointing for Nigerian students who want to get the best possible education.

Undoubtedly, many universities abroad are renowned for their quality of education. They often have better resources, such as well-equipped libraries, state-of-the-art research facilities, and experienced professors.

These universities also place a strong emphasis on research, innovation, and critical thinking skills, which can provide Nigerian students with a more comprehensive educational experience.

3. Better Job Opportunities

Graduates from overseas universities often have an advantage in the job market due to their exposure to diverse knowledge, cultures, and perspectives. This can make them more attractive to employers who value their global outlook and cross-cultural competencies.

Many multinational companies also prefer to hire graduates from overseas universities because they have experience working with people from different cultures and backgrounds. This can help Nigerian students secure jobs in global companies in Nigeria and abroad.


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4. Cost of Living

Studying in Nigeria can be expensive. The cost of living in Nigeria is often higher than in other countries, especially housing, food, and transportation. Some Nigerian students find that studying abroad is cheaper because of lower living costs. 

For example, in countries like Malaysia and China, the cost of living is much lower than in Nigeria. This can make studying abroad a more affordable option for Nigerian students.

Furthermore, many universities in the United States, like the University of Florida, offer financial aid to students. This can include grants, scholarships, and loans that help pay for tuition and living expenses. Nigerian students studying abroad in the United States can often apply for this financial aid to help pay for their education. 

In addition, some Nigerian students may be able to get a part-time job while they are studying. This can help them earn money to support themselves in school.

5. International Exposure

Studying abroad allows Nigerian students to experience different cultures and ways of life. This can broaden their perspective and help them develop a global mindset.

Nigerian students who study abroad can learn about different cultures, languages, and customs. This can be especially valuable if they plan to work in an international company or a global industry.

Many Nigerian students find that studying abroad helps them to become more independent and self-reliant.

6. Rigorous Admission Process

Getting admitted into a Nigerian university is often a long and difficult process. First, students must pass the West African Examination Council (WAEC) exam. Then, the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) exam. 

Even after passing these exams, some universities require their entrance exams. This means that students have to take several exams to have a chance to study at a Nigerian university.

Meanwhile, abroad universities do not require as many exams as Nigerian universities. This makes it easier for students to study abroad.

READ ALSO: Study Abroad Guide: All You Need To Know As An African Student 

7. Advanced Teaching Methods

In foreign countries, universities often use more advanced teaching methods. Some even use the curricula of the world's most developed countries. It helps students to compete with students from other countries. 

In Nigeria, however, universities only use one curriculum. This means that students may not get the same quality of education as students in foreign countries. As a result, some Nigerian parents prefer to send their children abroad to study.

8. Opportunity to Live Abroad

For many Nigerian students, studying abroad is not just about getting a better education. It is also about experiencing a different way of life.

Studying abroad allows Nigerian students to live in a new country, learn about a new culture, and make new friends from all over the world.

For some Nigerian students, studying abroad can be a stepping stone to living and working abroad permanently.

9. Improving Language Skills

One reason why Nigerian students study abroad is to improve their language skills.

Studying in a country where English is the primary language, like the United Kingdom, can help Nigerian students improve their English skills. 

This is because they are constantly exposed to the language and have opportunities to practice speaking and writing in English.

Furthermore, studying abroad allows Nigerian students to learn other languages. For instance, if a Nigerian student studies in a country like France, they may have the opportunity to learn French.

10. Gaining a Global Mindset

When Nigerian students study abroad, they are exposed to different cultures, perspectives, and ways of life. This helps them develop a more global mindset. 

For instance, a Nigerian student studying in the United States may learn about American history and culture. They might also learn about current events and global issues that affect the world. 

By gaining this global perspective, Nigerian students can become more well-rounded and better equipped to tackle complex challenges in their home country.


In a nutshell, there are many compelling reasons why Nigerian students choose to study abroad. From better education and job opportunities to improving language skills and developing a global mindset - the opportunities and benefits are clear. 

However, studying abroad is not without its challenges. It requires a great deal of courage and determination, as well as financial resources and support from family and friends. 

Nonetheless, for many Nigerian students, the rewards of studying abroad far outweigh the challenges.


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