If I Score Low in JAMB, What Can I Do Next? - SCHOOLCONTENTS.info
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If I Score Low in JAMB, What Can I Do Next?

Each year, candidates' performance in JAMB can be disappointing. In fact, when candidates are said to have performed well or above average, especially if compared to the previous years, some candidates will still be affected very badly.

As soon as candidates started checking their results directly through their phones, using SMS, my blog got a series of questions about JAMB scores.

If I score 120, can I gain admission? My school cut-off mark is 180 but I got 179, what can I do? Will JAMB reduce the cut-off mark this year because I scored low? Can I upgrade my JAMB score to have above 250 or more?

These are a few of the questions I got within 24 hours of releasing the UTME results.

In this post, I want to help you relax and give you the right steps to gain admission, even though you got a lower mark in JAMB. I want to use my years of experience to guide you on how to approach things now that the result is out and before admission will start properly for the year.

Below is the list of steps to take if your UTME score is low and you still want to gain admission with that.

1. Don't Panic With the Lower JAMB Score

As obvious as it is that something is wrong with a lower score, in UTME, thousands of students will still gain admission with their poor scores, if they understand just a few things and listen to my pieces of advice.


You will see that before you complete reading this post.

It's one thing to get a higher mark, it's another thing to secure admission with it.

I've seen students who scored above 250 but never entered schools while candidates with 150 or less made their way to campuses.

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For reference, in the 2020 admission for example, out of the 4,948 applicants who scored 300 and above, only 3,492 gained admission into higher institutions, leaving out a total of 1,456 applicants stranded.

In the same year, about 52,323 candidates scored between 250 and 299 in the same examination, out of which 22,580 candidates were also not admitted.

In the same vein, some 193,661 candidates out of 347,469 who scored between 200 and 249 were not offered admissions.


You will see that before you leave this page.

This misfortune repeats itself every year because of some factors such as:

  1. applicants’ rigidity about a specific course i.e. when a candidate who wants a particular course refuses to settle for anything else; 
  2. wrong O’level subject combination; 
  3. low post-UTME screening score; 
  4. UTME-combination deficiency, 
  5. duplication of application, 
  6. absence from post-UTME screening,
  7. mismatch of catchment institutions,
  8. and non-acceptance of the offer.
  9. failure to upload their O’level with five credits in the required subjects.

To this end, if you can do all the above right, even with your lower score, you'll be on campus when your friends and enemies, who scored higher, may remain home till next year.

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2. Do the Change of Institutions/Courses But Don't Rush at That 

One way out of the stress, following getting a lower score in JAMB, is to do the JAMB change of institution and/or courses. With this, you can wave goodbye to schools that usually demand higher marks and opt-in for schools that will accept your lower score.

A course that accepts a lower score doesn't make it a cheap one. It may be because the course is not as competitive as the one you were chasing earlier.

Such a new course can even be better, for you, for a promising career and further academic pursuit.

A school accepting changes from lower-score candidates is not cheap as well. Less competitive institutions can save you the headache if you're low on your UTME score.

But, a point of warning here.

Don't rush at making changes yet!

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As soon as your UTME result is released and printed, wait to see how things will go. Schools will not start admission that soon. It takes about two months after UTME results are out before a majority of institutions will be selling their post UTME/screening forms.

While waiting, read about their last year's post UTME/screening exercise to know what they accepted. In most cases, they don't change such cut-off marks so often.

And if they will change it, it could be just a few marks lower or higher. It's not going to be anything significant.

Knowing this can help you decide whether to change the course, institution or both.

And if it looks blank, don't worry. You can still change your institution, course or both when they start selling their post UTME/screening forms

In fact, change of institution and/or course is a continual exercise till the admission year ends. And the admission year won't end until another JAMB form might have been on sale. 

Wouldn't you be surprised if I told you that a few schools were still selling their post UTME/screening forms, for the last admission, as of the time you're buying new JAMB forms, and till now that you're checking JAMB results for new admission? 

Universities such as Adekunle Ajasin University, Ondo State, Ekiti State University, Ado-Ekiti, and a few others might still have their last year's forms on sale. 

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If it is still possible to gain the last year's admission, with the last year's JAMB result, to date, if you take time before making changes, it means, at worst, if you won't be on the first batch, you can be on the second, third, fourth or the supplementary batch.

In short, there is no need to rush into changing institutions/courses. You might be wasting your money on JAMB if you had to do the changes three or more times before the admission year ends because you couldn't hang in enough.

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3. Consider Schools Accepting Lower Scores

Talking of Change of Institutions, while you can still stick to your favorite institutions as chosen in the UTME, you can just change to the ones accepting lower scores, now that the UTME mark has hurt your plan.

Similarly, don't just trust your gut, your friends', and families' advice on which and which school to change to. Try to wait for these institutions to announce the sale of their admission forms before you change.

If you must be rushed by parents or sponsors, it will be better to look at what the schools accepted in recent years, to predict the possible cut-off mark, for this year, before deciding where to change to.

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However, in all, lower scores are better tried with polytechnics and colleges of education. You can see my compilation in, "21+ Schools that Accept 100+ for Admissions"

These higher institutions, unlike the universities, will have a fewer competition in the end. Hence, it will be wise to chase their admissions rather than competing for universities' courses with your lower mark.

On a good day, most, if not all polytechnics and colleges of education, will accept scores between 100 to 179 as the competition may determine. Hence, if you're specifically within this range, consider changing any of your polytechnics or colleges of education to the first choice and focus on that.

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4. Consider Admissions Without JAMB UTME

Lucky you, if you don't want to use JAMB UTME to gain admission. Yes, you can gain admission without JAMB.

There are universities offering admissions for degree programmes without UTME/DE, so also a few polytechnics won't need JAMB UTME for their ND programmes.

Among such programmes are distant learning, regular part-time, and daily or direct part-time.

Luckily, you can cross to HND full-time after completing your ND part-time or daily part-time. This will help you to serve at NYSC.

You can also run a university daily part-time programme such as for the Federal University of Oye Ekiti which also promises NYSC.

A few distance learning programme such as that of the University of Ibadan (UIDLC), and Obafemi Awolowo University (OAUDLC) also assures you of serving at NYSC if you're within the 30 years of age on graduation and/or mobilization.

Other ways to gain admission if you don't care for the JAMB score this year include:

  1. schools of nursing that are not asking for JAMB
  2. pre-degree programmes which will only need next year's JAMB to be at 100 level, by next year
  3. A'level programmes such as UI Cambridge, and other schools IJMB, JUPEB, etc will help you skip JAMB next year and cross to the 200 level with Direct entry admission
  4. National Open University except that of now is yet to be going for NYSC. Read Can I Use NOUN Certificate To Get Jobs?


Scoring lower in this JAMB doesn't stop you from gaining admission if you know how to go about things. While that small score is still sufficient for several courses if you are not too choosy, you can as well consider multiple other options, as earlier listed, that won't require JAMB UTME in the first place.

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  1. Sir pls I lost the sim for my jamb registration, and I haven't been able to see my result please will jamb portal eventually be opened for result checking later cause it has been closed

    1. Yes, they will open portal for all to check sooner. Be patient!

  2. I scored 165 and I just found out that the university of my choice accepts 170 and above so is there advice for me Sir?.... I was thinking I'll put more effort and try get a good score on my POST-UTME coming up soon. But I don't know I just need some advice please 🥺

    1. If you don't have their JAMB cut-off mark, you won't be able to participate in the post UTME.

  3. Sir please is it possible for me to apply for unilag DE form without jamb

    1. No, it's not possible. First, to apply for DE, you must be a holder of any of BSC, HND, ND, NCE, RN, JUPEB. Then, you have to obtain JAMB Direct Entry form and consider UNILAG as a choice. For more information, read the post below.


  4. Sir please I scored 192 in jamb what is my chance of gaining admission to study mechanical engineering in fuoye
    O level is good I have B3 in all my five subject

    1. Wait for the university to release their cut-off mark for this year before you can conclude.

  5. Pls sir, I got a 203 😔 in jamb to study nursing in unilag, is it still possible or will post utme help me

  6. Hello ,please I want to do change of course in 200l am currently in 200lvl will my jamb score still stop me from doing it , my total gp is good

  7. Pls sir I done change of institution for the third time now. My current institution of choice is Futmina but my changes are yet to reflect on the school portal. It's been two weeks already and the school UTME FORM is ending on the 30th October, pls what can I do??

  8. Sir i got 179 in jamb can i be considered to write post utme sir


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