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General News Thu, 17 Mar 2005

Ghana's universities asked to review curricula

Sunyani March 17, GNA - Professor Father Michael Schultheis, President of the Catholic University College of Ghana has called for the drastic changes in the curricula of the country's universities to meet current global challenges.

He said a university "is an intellectual and educational resource for the wider community and has an important role to play in humanizing globalisation".

Prof. Fr. Schultheis made the call in a lecture on "Faith, Freedom and Society and The Role Of The University In The Beginning Of The Third Millennium", organized by the University in Sunyani.

He noted that, "today's universities function from the premise that knowledge is value free and is to be bought and sold like any other commodity... The universities have lost their way and validate the statement that the contemporary university culture is hollow at its core."

Prof. Fr. Schultheis said globalisation had had far reaching impact on every feature of higher education.

"It is forcing fundamental changes in educational institutions everywhere and places particular stress on poorer countries and weaker societies," he said.

Prof. Fr. Schultheis said globalisation "challenges the future of the university, questions its core objective of serving the common good, pressures traditional academic values in an emerging global education market and calls for solutions to common problems".

He noted that Universities in poorer countries would maintain instruction as the key activity of their academic activities, but added that the danger was that the process of globalisation would marginalize most of them.

"Universities in such countries would be excluded from the creation of knowledge and relegated to the training of personnel who meet the demands of the competitive global economy", the University President said.

Prof. Fr Schultheis said some of the problems facing higher education were associated with population growth and rapid increase in enrolment.

The Right Reverend Dr Matthew Gyamfi, Bishop of the Sunyani Diocese of the Catholic Church, urged the universities to concentrate on postgraduate research structures and not to produce graduates who could not get jobs.

Source: GNA