Issues and Options for Using Multimedia to Improve Pre-Service Mathematics Teacher Education in Ghana (Published)
It is well documented that the overly theoretical coursework in conventional mathematics teacher education programs does not effectively challenge pre-service mathematics teachers’ preconceived ideas about the teaching of mathematics. In addition, field experiences provided for pre-service teachers have been shown to have inherent limitations. Consequently, several mathematics educators have drawn attention to the need to engage pre-service mathematics teachers in experiences that present actual teaching practices and make it possible for them to study or critique those practices reflectively. In the developed countries like the US there appears to be a growing interest in the potential of multimedia systems to bring this type of reflective and critical thinking about the teaching of mathematics. In the developing countries such as Ghana, very little of such efforts, if any, is being done to improve mathematics teacher education. This paper looks at the potential of these multimedia environments to improve education of prospective mathematics teachers in Ghana. It focuses on how multimedia programs fit into contemporary theories of teacher learning and supports this with a discussion of empirical research efforts at using multimedia programs to facilitate education of prospective mathematics teachers. Implications for pre-service mathematics teacher education in Ghana are also presented.
English Expressions in Ghana’s Parliament (Published)
This paper takes a look at the English language spoken on the floor of parliament by Ghanaian parliamentarians. It attempts to ascertain the English features of Ghanaian parliamentarians and whether the identified features can be described as Ghanaian English. The study was guided by the syntactic features given as typical of WAVE (Bokamba, 1991) and the grammatical description of African Englishes (Schmied, 1991) and a careful reading of the Hansard which is the daily official report of parliamentary proceeding. It is revealed that the English spoken by Ghanaian parliamentarians has identifiable Ghanaian features that can support the claim that their English is typically Ghanaian.
The study investigated the relationship between bank equity capital and profitability by sampling fourteen (14) banks, using the purposive sampling technique, out of the twentyeight (28) universal banks operating in Ghana at the time, with data covering an eleven- year period (2005-2015). The study adopted the panel data methodology to examine the effect of bank capital on profitability. The random-effects Generalised Least Square (GLS) regression was adopted as an estimation technique for the research. The study revealed that equity capital is significantly and positively related to Net Interest Margin (NIM), and Return-on-Equity (ROE). Bank size is significantly and negatively related to ROE, and insignificantly inversely related to NIM. Regulated bank capital is a disincentive to inclusive financial intermediation in Ghana.
Sources and Effects of Stress on Work Performance, and Coping Strategies among Nurses at University of Cape Coast Hospital, Cape Coast, Ghana (Published)
Stress is part of our everyday life and affects all aspects of our activities. In professions, where encountering hundreds of people is a routine could be very stressful. This is the nature of the nursing profession, with its attendant effects on the physical and psychological wellbeing of the nurse. This study set out to find the sources and effects of stress on work performance among nurses at the University of Cape Coast Hospital, and the coping strategies they adopt. Questionnaire was used to solicit data from the respondents. Using the multi-stage sampling technique, fifty nine nurses were sampled for the study. Three research questions and three hypotheses were formulated, and answered and tested respectively. Independent t-tests, Analysis of Variance, and means were used in analyzing the data collected. No statistically significant differences were found between the ages of nurses and the type of stress experienced, by gender with respect to how they coping strategies toward stress, and among the various ranks of nurses and the effect of stress on their performance. It was concluded that, nurses in the University of Cape Coast Hospital were aware of the sources of stress among nurses, aware of the effects of stress on their performance, and had devised their strategies for coping with stress.It was therefore recommended that management of the Directorate of University Health Services (UCC) organizes seminars, workshops, forum, among others on incidence of stress and stress management strategies for the nurses. This would help the nurses to be abreast with stress coping strategies thereby alleviating stress on them. It was also recommended that counsellors were brought on to put in techniques that would assist nurses who are going through stressful conditions, which are likely to affect their performance on the work.
The study examined academic motivation and academic performance of Junior High School (JHS) students in Ghana. Differences between the academic motivation of male and female students as well as between students from urban and rural schools were examined. Participants were 756 male and 714 female JHS 2 students randomly selected from 24 Junior High Schools through stratified random sampling using gender and location as criteria for stratification. Two research instruments, the Academic Motivation Scale (AMS) with a Cronbach Alpha Reliability Coefficient of 0.75 and Achievement Tests in Mathematics, English Language, Social Studies and Integrated Science were used to collect data. Pearson Product Moment Correlation Coefficient and t-tests were used in analyzing the data. The results showed a positive relationship between academic motivation and academic performance of JHS students. While the results showed a statistically significant difference between the academic motivation of students in schools in urban and rural areas, there was difference between the academic motivation of male and female students. It was recommended that teachers, parents and all those concerned with the education of children should put in place psychological processes that are intended to boost the ego of students thereby making them have an inner feeling of satisfaction when they accomplish academic tasks.
Ensuring the Effectiveness of Internal Audit Units in Public Sector Institutions in Ghana- MDAs/MMDAs in Perspective (Published)
The article identified and analysed generally accepted factors or best practices that ensure or indicate the effectiveness of an Internal Audit Unit in public and private sector organizations. The aim was to use those factors identified from literature to design a model (conceptual framework) that can be used by public sector organisations in Ghana for measuring and ensuring the effectiveness of Internal Audit Units. The method used, which was only qualitative, was to search through empirical, legal and regulatory and professional literature for those factors that were known to ensure the effectiveness of IAUs. Eight important factors that became the parameters of a new model were identified. It was concluded that there are sufficient provisions that create the desired efficiency of Internal Audit Units in Ghana given the legal and professional environment. It was recommended that MMDAs and the Internal Audit Agency should adopt the model developed here to measure the effectiveness of Internal Audit Units in their organisations.
This paper explores determinants of loan default by Agribusiness entities in the Tamale Metropolis of Ghana. Data to examine the causes of loan default was obtained from owners through structured questionnaire and descriptive statistics, Kendall coefficient of concordance and logistic binary regression was used to analyse the data. Financial variables were more significant than demographic characteristics of agribusiness entities to cause loan default. This suggests financial institutions must apply appropriate adjustments to financial variables in order to minimize loan default risk considering the agricultural sector.
Pre-Service Teachers’ Use of Pedagogical Content Knowledge in Teaching and Learning Mathematics at Basic Seven in Akatsi District, Ghana (Published)
The purpose of the study is to explore how pre-service teachers’ use their Pedagogical Content Knowledge (teachers’ knowledge of content and students’ thinking process) to identify and diagnose students’ misconceptions in comparing, adding, multiplying and dividing fractions. Pre-service teachers were expected to identify students’ misconceptions, give reasons of students’ misconceptions, and ask specific questions to diagnose students’ thinking processes that lead to the misconceptions. A total of 72 pre-service teachers teaching Mathematics were purposively selected out of 320 students from the schools of practice. Descriptive survey design was used for the study. Data collected were analyzed using frequencies, percentages and means. The study revealed that about 60% of the pre-service teachers could identify the students’ misconceptions but only 17% of them could articulate the reasons for students’ misconceptions clearly. Also about 58% of the pre-service teachers asked probing questions instead of specific questions to diagnose students’ misconceptions and only about 14% of them asked specific questions. It was concluded that most of the pre-service teachers were able to identify students’ misconception but could not give reasons for the students’ misconceptions. In addition, majority of the pre-service teachers could not ask specific questions to diagnose students’ misconceptions. It was recommended that teacher training institutions integrate pedagogical content knowledge in to the curriculum to equip pre-service teachers with skills that would enable them to analyze students’ thinking processes.
Analysis of Poverty Trends in Ghana (Published)
The definition of poverty differs across regions and localities in reference to traditions and what society perceived to be poor characterises of a household. In the past, poverty was defined based on household indices such as income levels, consumption and expenditure patterns among others. However, in our efforts to estimate poverty level of households or communities, one has to take into consideration the multi-dimensional nature of poverty and factors that contribute to poverty including both human and social indices normally drafted into poverty reduction projects and strategies.
Relationship between Professional Development of Head Teachers and Supervision Of Instruction in Ghanaian Basic Schools (Published)
While a number of training programmes are organized to strengthen the supervisory roles of headteachers in Ghanaian basic schools, research suggests that the quality of instructional supervision remains poor. Employing quantitative research paradigm, this study sought to explore the relationship between professional development and supervision of instruction of headteachers in the basic schools of one educational district in Ghana. The study results showed that while engagement in both formal and informal professional development activities correlated with instructional supervision, only the engagement in informal professional development activities significantly predicted supervision and evaluation of instruction. This suggests that informal learning experiences appear to be valuable than formal professional development activities in the selected district. Educational authorities in Ghana therefore need to coordinate and strengthen the existing informal/on-the-job learning strategies in schools to facilitate the supervisory skills of headteachers.
The gambling behaviour of the youth is among the least explored research areas in Ghana. Most previous study focused on youth and employment, youth and development, youth and politics, youth empowerment, youth and education, youth and HIV/AIDS and more recently youth and agriculture. The big question is how much do we know about youth and problem gambling as Ghanaians? This study deployed social learning theory and social conflict theory by Albert Bandura and Karl Max respectively as the underpinning philosophies to assess youth gambling attitude in Ghana in order to fill this knowledge gap. A cross sectional descriptive survey approach was adopted for this study. Stratified sampling technique was used to select 200 youth from all the nine sub metro within Kumasi metropolis. Structured questionnaire was the main instrument used in gathering primary data. Data were analyzed with Predictive Analytic Software (PASW) for windows. The results were presented using regression, correlation, ANOVA and percentages. The study revealed that all the factors outlined to predict youth gambling behaviour were significant (R2 = 0.822, ANOVA < 0.05). Furtherance, 1% change in familial factors will bring 70.7% (0.8412) in youth attitude towards gambling. Moreover, 1% change in social factors will bring 22.9% (0.4792) change in youth attitude towards gambling. Also, a unit change in cultural and demographic factors will bring 4.7% (0.2192) change in youth attitude towards gambling. Finally, a unite change in environmental factor will bring 2% (0.1422) change in youth attitude towards gambling. It is recommended that future studies should consider factors such as cognitive and economic factors to determine youth gambling behaviour.
This study examined the prevalence of domestic violence in the socio-economic and political context in Ghana. The study conveniently sampled 200 women within Kumasi metropolis as participants. Data for the study came from both primary and secondary sources. Structured questionnaires were face-to-face administered to the respondents. The data were analyzed with the aid of Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) for windows. The study revealed that the prevalence of Cultural factors had been agreed by respondents as scourge of domestic violence. Acceptability of violence as means to resolve conflict (M=4.7), bride price and dowry (M=4.2), Cultural definitions of appropriate sex roles (M=4.25), Belief in the inherent superiority of males (M=4.3). Prevalence of economic factors were agreed by respondents as follows: Women’s economic dependence on men (M=5.0) limited access to employment in formal and informal sectors (4.26) discriminatory laws regarding inheritance, property rights, use of communal lands (4.2). Prevalence of Political factors were agreed by respondents as follows: Under-representation of women in power, politics, media and in the legal and medical profession (M=4.17), Risk of challenge to status-quo/religious laws (M=4.35). Legal factors included: laws regarding divorce, child custody, maintenance and inheritance (M=4.31) insensitive treatment of women and girls by police and judiciary (M=4.91). More than halve of the respondents indicated that they have even been assaulted by men. The study revealed a significant association between ever been assaulted and employment status (X2=76.9, p-value<0.05, df =6). Again there is a significant relationship between ever been assaulted and education attainment (X2=35.25, p-value<0.05, df =8). There are relationship between females ever been assaulted and age X2=21.13, p-value<0.05, df =8). Policy intervention and reinforcement of the existing legislation is imperative in the civility of these findings.
Plagiarism Is A Crime: Towards Academic Integrity in Higher Educational Institutions in Ghana (Published)
Admittedly, students’ academic plagiarism comes in different forms. Surprisingly, little is known about the most common form of student’s plagiarism due to inadequate research. This study was aimed to fill this knowledge gap by empirically examined the most common forms of students’ academic plagiarism in the Wa municipality of Ghana. The choice of the study sitting was influenced by the increasing educational activities in the area. The population of the study comprised of all tertiary students in the municipality. The positivist (quantitative) research design was deployed. Convenience sampling technique was used to select 200 respondents. Data for the study were elicited from both primary and secondary sources. Questionnaires were the main interment used in gathering primary data. The constructs for the questionnaires were adopted from Sentleng and King (2012) which was modified to address the objectives of the study. The data were analyzed with the aid of Predictive Analytics Software (PASW). The results were presented using Means (M), Standard Deviations (SD), Relative Important Index (RII) and Chi-square Test. The study revealed the most frequent forms of students plagiarism as follows: Invented or altered data (M=4.16, SD= 0.9), Writing an assignment for your friend (M=4.10, SD=0.9),Copy a text without acknowledgement (M=4.05, SD=1.3), Submitted someone’s work without their permission (M=3.41, SD=1.4), Paraphrased without acknowledging the source (M=2.41, SD=1.7), Summarizing a text without acknowledgement (M=2.73, SD=1.4).Chi-square Test revealed that there is a significant difference between Gender and age of students (χ2 -value = 17.98, df =3, p-value<0.05). Moreover, there is significant difference between religion and age (χ2 -value = 6.55, df =3, p-value=0.05). It is concluded that the most common forms of plagiarism among the students were paraphrased without acknowledging the source (Patchworks), Copy a text without acknowledgement, Invented or altered data (Sham),imitating friends work (Pastiches) and. Training on academic writings need to be intensified.
An Examination of Customers’ Evaluation of the Justice Theory as a Basis For Understanding the Process of Service Recovery and Satisfaction With Recovery in the Provision of National Health Insurance in Ghana (Published)
This study examined thoroughly customers’ evaluation of the justice theory as a basis for understanding the process of service recovery and satisfaction with recovery in the provision of National Health Insurance in Ghana. Field responses were gathered from the Clients (Subscribers’). In all, 2000 self -administered questionnaires were sent to Subscribers in each of the four Schemes (making a total of 8000). Based on the responses gathered from the field, it was revealed that all the four Schemes studied can be described as being unfair when it comes to their quests of applying the justice theory to responding to service failures. The findings further conclude that majority of the respondents do not agree that the Schemes studied provide satisfaction with recovery and are not satisfied with overall firms (Schemes).
Assessing the Efficiency of Soya Bean Marketing In the Ejura-Sekyedumasi and Nkoranza South Districts of Ghana (Published)
The study aimed at assessing the efficiencies of soya bean marketing channels in the Ejura-Sekyedumasi and Nkoranza South Districts, Ghana. The multi-stage sampling technique was employed in selecting thirty-seven soya bean farmers, two wholesalers, seven retailers, two small-scale processors and one large-scale processor of soya beans for the study. Gross Margin analysis was employed in determining the marketing costs and margins whereas the Shepherd’s Method was used in analyzing the efficiencies of the marketing channels. The study revealed that nine different channels existed through which soya bean was marketed in the study areas, with the simplest channel (Channel 1) being where farmers sell directly to consumers. Analysis of marketing cost and margins revealed that comparatively, Channel 1 had the least cost (GH₵2.40) and margins (GH₵10.50) since farmers dealt directly with consumers without any interference from market intermediaries, who usually increase transaction cost. From the study, Channel 1 was the most efficient channel with an Efficiency Index of 37.71. Thus, its marketing cost constituted a smaller proportion of the consumer price. The study recommends that farmers use Channel 1 where they sell directly to consumers to market their produce and also form co-operatives to protect them against price fluctuation and give them assurance of buyers. Moreso, the central government is directed to intervene in the form of road construction and improvement to help reduce the excessive transportation cost associated with the soya bean trade in Ghana
Effect of Quality of Scope on Bidding Activities (Published)
Procurement is rapidly becoming prominent as a preference function that offers high-impact prospects for convalescing the bottom line. The effectiveness of procurement results depend much on the inviolability of the processes involved. One of such processes is scope of work. In the process of procuring the services, goods and works, a scope has to be prepared which is also used in the preparation of the bidding documents. This study, then sought to investigate the effect of scope on bidding activities with a case of Golden Star (Bogoso/Prestea) Limited (GSBPL). Both primary and secondary data were used for the study. From the study of the processes involved in the scoping of bid documents at GSBPL, it was revealed that the user departments initiate the process for the procurement of goods and services and prepare the initial scope for this process. But the contract department is involved in guiding and reviewing the process to make sure it is adequate. The study also established that most scope in the bid documents were not adequate and therefore did not meet quality standards. On identifying the causes of inadequate scoping, the study showed that lack of communication between two or more user departments, ambiguity of scope, lack of proper planning among others negatively affect the quality of the scope and the bidding process. With the quality of scope on bidding activities, it was disclosed that a good quality of scope will result in bidders meeting submission deadlines and submitting very competitive bids which are easy to evaluate, less bidder questions, and therefore has a positive impact on the bidding process. Poor quality scope on the other hand, will result in extension to bid submission dates, make evaluation of bids very difficult and may result in rebidding with a revised scope. This may delay projects of the company and challenge to the proposal evaluation and source selection is almost traceable to an uninformative or ambiguous scope of work. The study as a result recommended among others, for more collaboration between the contracts departments and the user department in the scoping of bid documents, user department must have a proper plan of their requirements for bidding activities, training of staff of contracts and user department on the scoping of bid documents and the preparation of a lessons learned report to document all the processes that were followed from initiation of the scope to the provision of the services, goods or works.
A Consideration of the Possibility of DoS and DDoS Attacks That Could Guarantee Downtime and Unavailability of Services to Customers for Businesses and Government Institutions in Ghana. (Published)
This paper discusses the possible security attacks that most services provided by businesses and government organizations are vulnerable to. Specifically exhausting discussion on Denial of Service and Distributed Denial of Service attacks and the measures to address this issue.
The Sins and the Punishments: Towards the Incidence of Domestic Violence and Its Extenuating Circumstances in Ghana (Published)
This paper was carried out to examine the prevalence of domestic violence and possible extenuating circumstance in the Kintampo South District of Ghana. The target population of the study was predominately women. 200 of these women were selected purposively to participate in the study. Structured questionnaires were used to gather primary data. Secondary data were obtained from academic research data bases including EBSCO, Google Scholar and Cross-Ref. Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to analyze the field data. Respondent’s participations were purely voluntary. The study revealed forms of domestic violence as follows: Rape, Torture, Molestation, Battering, Forced Labor, and feticide. Extenuating Circumstances were discovered as follows: Medical response, Counseling Law enforcement, Public education, Media blitz, Role of Gender Activists and psychologist. Also it was found that there is a significant (X2 = 98.19, df = 8, p-value < 0.05) association between women educational level and rape experience. Moreover, the study revealed a significant association between women age and rape experience. Again, there is a significant (df = 16, X2 = 248.14, p-value<0.05) association between women educational level and force marriage experience. There is a significant association between women age and forced marriage experience. It is concluded that nobody should ever think that the blight of domestic violence is over neither in Ghana nor many other developing countries. The domestic violence scourger still lives. The proposed extenuating measures should be taken serious by policy maker to avert the situation. Development psychologists are also needed to aid behavioural studies.
Effects of Services Quality on Customer Satisfaction: A Case from Private Hostels in Wa-Municipality of Ghana (Published)
The aim of this was to examine the influence of Hostel Services Quality on Student’s Satisfaction in the University of Development Studies (UDS) within the Wa-municipality of Ghana. A cross sectional quantitative research design was employed. The target populations of the study were predominately students in private hostels. Whopping 300 students were randomly sampled to participate in the study. The questionnaires were adopted from the SERQUA Model. Both primary and secondary data were employed in the study. The data were analyzed with the aid of Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS). The study had revealed that overall the model used in this study was acceptable ANOVA was significant (p-value < 0.05). The study also revealed that, taking all the other factors constant at zero; a unit change in tangibility will bring 0.054 change in students satisfaction, a unit change in assurance will bring 0.318 a unit change in reliability will bring 0.342 in customer satisfaction, a unite change in responsiveness will bring 0.096 change in students satisfaction and finally, a unit change in empathy will bring 0.381 change in students satisfaction. It is concluded that hostel management should paid attention to the legitimate discontent among the students to improve efficiency in order to prevent massive switching rate in the long run when supply exceed demand in this business.
The Evil that Men Do in Academics: Understanding Plagiarism and Its Extenuating Circumstances (Published)
This study was premised to explore the causes of plagiarism and its extenuating circumstances in Higher Educational Institutions in Ghana. The study focused on Tertiary Students in the Kumasi and Sunyani Metropolis and Municipality respectively, 200 students were selected deploying a cluster sampling technique. The underpinning research paradigm was a cross sectional descriptive survey. Questionnaires were the main instrument used in eliciting primary data for the study. Secondary data were obtained from academic journals databases including EBSCO, and Google Scholar. The analyses were presented using Means, Standard Deviations, Unweighted Means, Relative Important Index (RII), Frequencies and Percentages. The study discovered the causes of student’s plagiarism as follows; poor writing skills, to obtain better marks, poor understanding of plagiarism, cost of quality education materials, Pressure from family and friends to offer help. The plagiarism extenuating factors were also discovered as follows; educate students on writing methods, assign different questions to different individuals, give tests quizzes or assignments more, assigning more in-class activities, not allowing students make up tests, rotate curriculum and trust building. It is recommended that deploying plagiarism detective software under covert study will help understand the causal factors better in order to inoculate student’s plagiarism effectively.