A workshop on basic teaching skills for higher education has taken place in Kumasi. The workshop, which spanned a five-day period, is the second in the series organised by the Association of African Universities (AAU) and was attended by lecturers from universities and other tertiary institutions from Ghana, Nigeria, Benin, Ethiopia, Swaziland and South Africa. The AAU intimated that many lecturers demonstrated poor skills in teaching because they were not trained professionally to teach and, therefore, made very little impact on their students. The workshop exposed the participants to methodologies of teaching in higher educational institutions such as preparation of lesson notes, planned questions for students and practical demonstration on ways of imparting knowledge. The Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Rev. Prof. Charles Ansah, admitted that only about five per cent of the university’s teaching staff were trained in teaching at the tertiary level. “The reason may be due to the fact that the recruitment framework only considers knowledge of the applicants who are mainly PhD holders with little monitoring to determine the impact of their teaching on students,” he said. According to the Quality Assurance Specialist of the AAU on Higher Education, Dr Violet Makuku, the second edition of the programme was a follow-up on the previous one held last year in Accra. She said the next edition of the workshop would be held in Zimbabwe. She urged management of universities across the continent to support their staff with financial assistance to enable them to attend such workshops or help them undertake postgraduate diploma or degree courses in education in order for them to deliver effectively. Rev. Prof. Ansah encouraged lecturers in universities to take up distance learning using video conferencing as a means to upgrade their teaching skills.
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