document.documentElement.className = 'js'; The Dangers of Graduating with Third Class : A & U Ng

It is no doubt that most people in higher institutions these days are oblivious of the fact that the grade at which they graduate will either give them comparative advantages over the system outside school or will end up limiting their chances and opportunities. Poor results might lead to missing key career opportunities and cost graduates in terms of finance.

In this article we will be taking you through the advantages of graduating with good grades and the relative disadvantages of graduating with low grades.

Overview of the Educational Grading System

The university system these days uses the five point grading system in their rating of the class of graduands. Below is a detailed explanation of how higher institutions grade their students.

First Class Division:                        4.5 – 5.0
Second Class Upper Division:       3.5 – 4.49
Second Class Lower Division:       2.5 – 3.49
Third Class Division:                      1.5 – 2.49
Pass Division:                                 1.0 – 1.49
Probation:                                        Below 1.0

To be on good academic standing, one has to be on a grade point of above 1.0 else the institution will have to ask the student to withdraw.

The above divisions will to a large extent determine the amount of opportunities and relative problems one may face in their academic journey.

While most people only care about having a graduate certificate, they fail to understand that the world outside is continuously changing at a very fast pace. The degrees and certificates that used to be important no longer hold values.

Looking back in time you’ll find out that there was a time when getting a Standard 6 (Primary six result) would give you access to a lot of opportunities. In those days, one could get a whole lot of jobs with just that Standard 6 certificate. Overtime the standard changed and that certificate started to lose value due to the emerging importance of O’level certificate.

The SSCE (Secondary School Certificate) became the new cool as having this certificate would automatically land you a lot of opportunities. Like its predecessor, its own time saw an end and we were ushered into this new dispensation of university and college degrees.

With the current rise in university graduates and admission seekers around the world, having a graduate certificate does not automatically qualify one to get a job.

Following this trend you will find out that even those who have jobs with their graduate certificates are currently threatened as many of them face the pressure from their workplaces to either get a higher certificate or lose their positions to others.

Benefits of Graduating With Good Grades

What is the point of graduating with good grades when there are no jobs? Does it really matter what grade I graduate with?

The questions above and lots more are questions most students ask out of ignorance. If you must know, the answer to all those questions are a big YES. Let us get into the reasons for that answer.

Firstly, if you do not know the importance of being educated you will not be able to appreciate the system. By being educated we are not talking about bagging a certificate, the education in this context is being adequately informed through the university scheme to be able to perform well in your field and still be able to fit in and function in society.

Secondly, there are a lot of opportunities that lie in the educational system and these opportunities only avail themselves to students who are truly committed to getting the best out of the system. There are a lot of schemes that are accessible to students, both government and private schemes. There are a lot of scholarships schemes flying around and these scholarships are mainly available to those with a particular grade point or within a particular grade class. Most scholarship schemes are never open to students who are in the second class lower division and lower.

Since most organizations these days are striving for the organizational aims of growth and sustainability, it has increased their search for a workforce that is not only made up of people with degrees, but a workforce that is competent, growth oriented, best in their field and innovative. A person with a good grade that has understanding of what they studied in school will already have an advantage over others.

One of the greatest threats to being employed is job security. If a person can be truly committed to getting education and puts in the effort to get the best, of course it will reflect on their work ethics. No manager will want to lose a staff who is not just competent but has a good work ethic.

Another thing having a good grade does is that it gives students a certain level of confidence in and outside school. When a person is adequately educated, it boosts their self esteem. In Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, the most important need is the need for self-actualisation, having a good grades and a good certificate contributes a lot to the satisfaction of that need.

It is worth noting that this list is not exhaustive, as there are many other benefits that getting good grades deliver to students, but for the purpose of this article we will be stopping here.

Limitations of Poor Grades

As earlier mentioned in the opening pages of the article, for you to be in good academic standing you need to have a grade point of at least 1.0 or you face the risk of being asked to withdraw from your institution.

Most people will be quick to conclude that all they need is just to ensure that they don’t fall below the 1.0 mark. Well it would be worthy of note that in the current world we are living, companies and industries have little or no regard for people that fall below the second class lower division.

Graduating alone is not enough, graduating well is what should be most important. Let’s go into some major reasons why you should avoid low grades.

Firstly, having or graduating with low grades already shows a lot of incompetence on the student. The image or impression of people on you will be mostly negative as they will see you as unserious. This notion becomes worse when it’s time to consider employing such a person.

Secondly, having or graduating with low grades has a way of limiting your chances. There have been cases of ‘had it been I had this particular grade, I would have gotten this opportunity’. Most people have missed many job opportunities and scholarship offers because they didn’t meet the minimum requirement for those openings.

Thirdly, most results have become unusable and monies wasted because of grades that cannot fit into most work places. In remedying those results, a lot of people have had to spend a lot of extra money in running PGD and other programmes. Especially for those who want to attain higher degrees, more time and more money have had to be spent moving higher in the educational ladder.

Lastly, consider this, why is it important to have college degrees in the first place? Is it just for show? Would it not be wiser to invest those monies into other ventures? The fact is that education is never a waste. It is only wasteful if you do not put your mind into getting the best out of it.

It is worthy of note that if one is truly competent, innovative and has the academic result to back it up, opportunities can never be missed. At least, strive for a second class upper so that you don’t fall too far behind.


Ese Odiri Richard is a Student of the National Open University, a manager of the FUO Latest News, a subsidiary of the A & U Ng. He is also a writer and publisher. You can reach Ese Odiri on 08107427374