Professor Kwasi Obiri-Danso, the Vice Chancellor of KNUST has mentioned the unbalanced student-teacher ratio as one of the biggest challenges the institution faces. He stated that in recent times, the student populace keeps increasing making the student-teacher ratio uneven and hence called for more lecturers. He added that KNUST has introduced Marine Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Automobile Engineering and other courses to meet the needs of the society, but due to lack of lecturers, the Institution has not begun running these programmes. Prof. Obiri-Danso stated this when the National Accreditation Board (NAB) paid a visit to the institution to discuss the challenges of tertiary education and measures to curtail them.
The Chairperson of NAB, Professor Kofi Awusabo-Asare expressed NAB’s interest in supporting KNUST to achieve its vision of being globally recognised as the premier centre of excellence in Africa for teaching in science and technology for development; and being part the top ten universities in Africa. In response to the issues the Vice Chancellor raised, he stated that the government is not oblivious of the current unfavourable student-teacher ratio and assures to assist the University to manage the expected increase in number of students in 2020 due to the Free Senior High School policy. He further stated that, the Government is committed to help solve these challenges.
On the challenges tertiary institutions face in Ghana, Dr. Kingsley Nyarko, the Executive Secretary of NAB decried the misuse of honorary titles. He said that some individuals go to the extent of paying huge sums of money to earn titles and advised that honorary titles are only used in the institutions they were earned. He advised that these honorary titles should not be part of names and urged the media to play a role in curbing the challenge.
He announced an initiative of NAB in benchmarking academic programmes to ensure that same programmes run in different universities have similar curricula. To this end, he stated that graduates from these programmes will possess similar skills and competencies suitable for the job market.
Finally, he revealed that presently, individuals forge certificates and indicated that NAB would run a nationwide verification of staff qualifications in 2019 to fish out the undesirable staff.