Economics/Commerce in JAMB and O’level Together, Acceptable?

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Admission seekers are asking if they can combine both Economics and Commerce together in their UTME subjects. Some want to know if the two subjects are recognized as an individual course at O’level. Do you know what I mean? Should you write Commerce and Economics together in WAEC, NECO, GCE, or NABEB?

As a Management, social science, or commercial student, your JAMB UTME subject combination requires English, Mathematics, Economics, and any other social science subject. Also, your O’level should normally include English, Mathematics, Economics and two other social or art subjects.

Among these social science/art subjects are Commerce, Government, Geography, and Account.

Candidates are now worried if it’s nothing bad to combine Economics with Commerce.

You must have read this somewhere that combining Economics and Commerce is not the best for you in UTME. A teacher, brother, or even a school might have warned you not to combine commerce with Economics during SSCE exams.

Is that true? Is there any brain behind this? Are some schools accepting this combination? Or generally, no school will accept this?

These and a few other questions will be addressed in this post.

Let’s ride on.

One University Is Well Known For not Accepting Commerce in Both UTME and SSCE

Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife is notorious about this. The university has zero tolerance for commerce. The university doesn’t accept Commerce whether you combine it with Economics or not.

I discussed and explained the university position on this in my post, “Commerce for OAU Admissions: What is the Real Truth?”.

Hence, don’t take Commerce in UTME if you want the “Oba Awon Universities”. In the same vein, don’t think the university will consider Commerce as one of your required 5 O’level subjects.  Mind you!

Most Universities (But Not ALL) Frown At Candidates Combining Economics with Commerce in UTME

In fact, other universities may accept commerce as a required SSCE subject but some don’t see this the same in UTME subjects.

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The universities believe that both ECONOMIC and COMMERCE are the same in nature. This is the basis of not accepting it together.

Let’s take a quick visit to the official JAMB brochure.

The University of Lagos (UNILAG), for example, for Accounting, accepts Mathematics, Economics, plus one (1) Subject from the following: Financial Accounting, Further Mathematics, Geography, Government, Literature in English, and Biology.

NOTE: No Commerce is mentioned among the other subjects

In fact, Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), For Accounting, requires Principles of Accounts, not Commerce. They made that open in JAMB Brochure.

University of Port Harcourt (UNIPORT), for the same Accounting, requires Mathematics, Economics plus any other subject from Government/History, Geography, Commerce, Literature in English, CRK/IRK, Accounting (Financial/Business), Biology/Agricultural Science, Chemistry, Physics.

NOTE: Is there Commerce?

After checking through other commercial courses in the universities, here are my conclusions:

  1. Certain universities (especially less competitive ones) are accepting Commerce with Economics. For example, ABU for Business Administration requires the Use of English, Economics, mathematics, and any Management or Social Science Subject. This means that they can accept Commerce. UNILAG, for Business Admin, also requires Mathematics, Economics and any one (1) subject from Science, Social Science or Arts.
  2. It will be advisable to combine Economics with Account. But if you’re trying to avoid three calculation subjects in UTME, go for Government instead of Commerce. This is because most schools accept the third subject from either social sciences or Arts.
  3. Be mindful that if you choose a school that accepts Commerce from the start, you may want to change institutions later. Will the combination work for the new school you intend to change to?

Polytechnics Can Be Sticker on Combination of Economics and Commerce

It surprises that most polytechnics accept either one of Economics or Commerce but not the two in their O’level subjects for commercial courses.

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For example, Federal Polytechnic Ede, for Accountancy, requires five (5) ‘O’ level credit passes or its equivalent in English Language, Mathematics and any other three (3) from the following Economics/Commerce, Business Method/Business Studies, Principle of Accounts/Book Keeping/Financial Accounting, Geography, History/Government, Agricultural Science/Biology/Physics/Chemistry, Insurance, Civic Education.

In other words, either Economics or Commerce – not both. The Polytechnic will count your Economics and Commerce as one subject.

However, YABTECH was different for the same Accountancy. YABATECH requires five (5) O’ Level credit passes in English Language, Mathematics, Economics, and any two (2) from the following: Commerce, Geography, Biology/Agricultural Science, History/Government, Business Management/Method, and Financial Accounting.

NOTE: Economics is compulsory, yet commerce is accepted as another O’level subject.

For O’level subjects for Business Administration Management, FEDFISH-LAG requires ‘O’ Level credit passes in English Language, Mathematics, Government/Geography, Economics/Commerce and any Social Science subject.

Federal Polytechnic Ilaro for the same Business Admin says the same as FEDPOLY EDE. See details below:

FEDPO-ILA requires ‘O’  Level credit passes in the English Language (not Literature in English), Mathematics and any three subjects from the following: Economics/Commerce, Business Methods / Business Studies,  Principles of Accounts / Book Keeping, Literature in English, Geography, Office Practice, Biology/Agricultural Science, Chemistry, Physics, History/Government, Typewriting, Shorthand, Civic Education, Financial Accounting, French, Insurance, CRS/IRK, Marketing, Salesmanship, Store Keeping, Store Management, Computer Studies, Entrepreneurship Education and Social Studies for Marketing, Business Administration and Management. And for Transportation Planning & Management they require ‘O’ Level credit passes in English Language, Mathematics, Geography, and or Economics, one basic science and any other subject from the following: Biology/Agricultural Science, Chemistry, Physics, Business Management, Further Mathematics, Economics/Commerce, Technical Drawing/Graphics Design, Painting, and Decoration, Civic Education, Building Construction, Metal Work, Financial Accounting, Introduction to Building Construction,  Machine WoodWorking.

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Let’s see UTME subjects from the polytechnic point of view.

For Accountancy, all polytechnics say:
Mathematics and two (2) of Geography, Commerce, Government, Principles of Accounts and Economics.

For Business administration, all polytechnics say:
Mathematics and two (2) of Geography, Commerce, Government, Principles of Accounts and Economics

For Marketing, all polytechnics say:
Mathematics and two (2) of Geography, Commerce, Government, Principles of Accounts and Economics

These are just three of the highly subscribed commercial courses in polytechnics. Note that they require the same subjects combination for the UTME. They seem to make only Mathematics compulsory and allow candidates to combine two other social science subjects.

Checking under the special consideration/remark, however, I notice that some of the federal polytechnics can be so stubborn with the need for ECONOMICS in their requirements instead of COMMERCE.

As a result, below are my recommendations:

  1. For any social science or commercial courses in the polytechnics, write English, Mathematics, Economics, and combine one of Geography, Commerce, and Government 
  2. Also, for the O’level subjects, count Economics and Commerce as one – at least to be on the safer side.
  3. Consider studying the JAMB brochure to avoid errors if you still want anything other than my guide here.

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