Introduction: There is a general agreement among previous studies that gender, merit and catchment area criteria allows for access to university education, but the pattern of these variables over the years has not been proven in these studies.
Purpose: This study used a times series approach to evaluate the enrolment patterns in federally owned universities in South-South Zone, Nigeria, based on the gender, merit and catchment area criteria.
Methodology: The descriptive survey design was adopted for this study. A purposive sampling technique was adopted to choose three universities based on the generation of their establishment. The evaluation covered from 2010 to 2019 using stationary time-bound data collected from the academic planning units of the institutions through a checklist. Future enrolment forecasts were made to 2031 using the moving average forecasting technique.
Results: A gender-based difference in enrolment, in favour of males was recorded between 2010 and 2019; there were notable fluctuations in the enrolment pattern based on the merit criterion from 2010 to 2019; the enrolment pattern in terms of the catchment area criterion was consistent from 2010 – 2019. In terms of the projection, it was predicted that enrolment at the aggregate level would rise continuously across federal universities, but not at the institutional level. more women than men are expected to be enrolled in academic programmes at federal institutions, while at the institutional level, gender-based enrolment can fluctuate.
Recommendations/Classroom Implications: Based on these findings, implications are discussed for future enrolment decisions at both the institutional and national levels.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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