UNIVERSITY OF CAPE COAST
INSTITUTE FOR EDUCATIONAL PLANNING AND ADMINISTRATION
M.ED. (ADMIN. IN HIGHER EDUCATION)-DISTANCE
INEQUALITY IN ACCESSING HIGHER EDUCATION IN GHANA: THE CHALLENGES AND WAYFORWARD
Globally, education remains the fulcrum for the achievement of higher economic, social, technological standards and development. Education continues to receive wide attention amongst most developed nations’ governments and policy due to the remarkable contributions that it brings to the nation. In Africa even though there seems to be a concerted effort by various governments to improve on education at all levels, there is ...view middle of the document...
Available data indicate that countries with the largest numbers of out-of-school children in 2004 were in Nigeria, Pakistan, India and Ethiopia. They were followed by Saudi Arabi, the Niger, Burkina Faso, Kenya, Cote d’Ivoire, Mali, Ghana and Mozambique (UNESCO, 2007). This statistic indicate that women are marginalised in terms of access to education and this continues to present challenges in the development of most African countries where political decision making rest in the hands of men.
Governments across Africa seem to be recognizing the effect of this situation and hence policies and initiatives are been developed to bridge this gap. In Ghana the number of higher educational facilities seems to be increasing at a faster rate which was not the case during independence. Before independence, Ghana only had one public university, thus the University of Ghana. The number of private universities has increased at an astronomical rate as the National Accreditation Board indicates that there are 54 private universities operating in Ghana offering both locally tailored and foreign access degree courses (http://www.nab.gov.gh/index.php?option=com_content&view=category&layout=blog&id=60&Itemid=185&limitstart=50). Despite these overwhelming developments, there remain inequalities in access to higher education in Ghana. Thus access has not been broadened to include all social groups.
STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
The standard of education of most universities in Ghana have seen some improvement in terms of quality of programs offered, teaching, research, and knowledge transfer. The advent of private universities and the flexibility that they offer in terms of time schedules for lectures makes it possible for even workers to have some maximum time to be able to acquire a higher educational degrees in various field of study thus from law, business, social and professional courses. Modernity and urbanization has increased the role of the Ghanaian women, challenging them to greater heights. More people including women are striving to move up higher on the academic and career ladder hence taking up higher education courses to enhance themselves. Notwithstanding, this remarkable feat statistical data available on enrolment seems to suggest that there continues to be gaps and disparity in terms of equity and access for women as against men.
Student enrolment worldwide increased from 13 million in 1960 to 82 million in 1995 and to 132 million in 2004 (UNESCO, 1998; UNESCO, 2006). However, globally, this still only means an enrolment rate of 24 per cent. In Sub- Saharan Africa, this figure drops to 5 percent, in Ghana 3 per cent and in Tanzania 1 per cent (UNESCO, 2006). Even though policies seem to provide the enabling environment necessary to create opportunities for both gender to access to higher education, as indicated by Lihamba et al (2006) the social group most likely to enter higher education are men from the top socio-economic...