Department Of Adult Education And Human Resource Studies

Brief History of the Department

The Department of Adult Education and Human Resource Studies could trace its origin and development to February 1948 when the Department of Extra Mural Studies was established prior to the establishment of the University College of the Gold Coast.


As a liberal adult education department, its emphasis was on the development of the Gold Coast citizenry in understanding the development of the country, promoting literacy and improving the knowledge of the Gold Coast workers through workshops, seminars and community forums and community development work. In order to sustain this educational drive, the Peoples Educational Association (PEA) was formed in 1949 in line with the Workers Educational Association of Great Britain.

It was not until 1973 that efforts were made to introduce certificate in Adult Education programmes. Later, a Diploma and Post-Graduate Diploma in Adult Education were added. In the 1987/88 Academic Year a Ph.D. programme was introduced albeit with one foreign student from the Republic of Benin.


In the 1989/1990 Academic Year the Post-Graduate Diploma programme was up-graded into a Master of Arts programme and in the following year up-graded into an M. Phil programme.


Finally, in the 2010/2011 Academic Year, the Bachelor of Arts in Adult Education was introduced. Thus, gradually the Institute of Adult Education (later Institute of Continuing and Distance Education) became a teaching department as well as performing external functions through the Workers Colleges in the ten regions of Ghana.

Vision of the Department

The Vision of the Department is to achieve academic excellence and train researchers, adult educators, human resource practitioners and professionals in line with the aspirations of Ghana’s human resource development goals.

Mission of the Department

The Mission of the Department is to offer excellent academic training that will equip students to become professional adult educators, university administrators, human resource professionals, community development experts, development researchers and distance education administrators as well as experts in allied adult education and human resource disciplines. To keep abreast with modern trends, the department will become a pace-setter in the introduction of online teaching and learning at the University of Ghana.


The Department is also committed to research and scholarship that focus on finding solutions to local problems through adult education and human resource development. Furthermore the department provides consultancy and professional extension services to enrich quality teaching and learning in Schools, Colleges, Polytechnics, Universities, Non-Governmental Organizations and other Development-Oriented Institutions in communities throughout Ghana.

Academic Programmes

Currently the department runs the following programmes:

·         Ph.D. in Adult Education and Human Resource Studies

·         M.A. / M.Phil in Adult Education

·         M.A./M.Phil in HIV and AIDS Management

·         M.A. in Distance Education and E-Learning

·         B.A. in Adult Education

·         Diploma in Youth Development Work (Commonwealth Youth Programme)

·         Diploma in Adult Education

These programmes are offered in full time face-to-face mode, as well as distance learning and sandwich formats.


Each student is assigned to a Senior Member (Academic) to mentor and offer academic advice. Students are required to undertake six weeks of field work (Practicum) during the long vacation to practice what they had learned as adult education and human resource students. They present a report at the end of the field work. Seminars are also organized on weekly basis for the graduate students on specific topics selected by the students themselves in consultation with their academic advisors.


Areas of Specialization

  • Development Studies
  1. Literacy and sustainable development
  2. Community development and education
  3. Gender studies in education
  • Distance Education
  • Human Resource Studies
  • Guidance and Counseling


Institutional Collaboration

The department has collaborated with national and international institutions including:

  • John Hopkins University’s Centre for Population and Communications
  • United Nations Educational,  Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • Non-Formal Education Division of Ministry of Education
  • Ministry of Education
  • Commonwealth of Learning
  • Ghana Institute of Linguistics, Literacy and Bible Translation (GILLBT)
  • Centre for National Distance Learning and Open School (CENDLOS)
  • Trades Union Congress (TUC)
  • Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT)
  • Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development
  • Local and International Universities


Centre for the Study of Literacy: This centre was established to serve as a laboratory for the study of literacy. Its main target groups are persons from the Franco-phone and Arab countries who intend to learn English within the shortest possible time in order to integrate and communicate fluently in the Ghanaian society.


Annual New Year School and Conference: The Department and the School have successfully organized this programme as a major event on the University’s calendar of activities since 1948, without any interruption regardless of which Government is in power, and with or without Government financial support.


Over the years, the event has brought people from all walks of life with diverse skills, professions and experiences to converge at Legon for about one week to deliberate on vital issues of national and international concern. Born out of the philosophy of liberal education, the New Year School and Conference focuses on the intellectual development of participants. This important event has consistently aimed at:


  •  Providing a platform for the dispassionate discussion of matters affecting the overall development of the country.
  • Encouraging consensus-building among people of diverse opinions and backgrounds.
  • Educating the general public on important and topical national and international issues.
  • Assessing public opinion on pertinent issues in order to ensure good governance.
  • Providing a forum for the initiation of public policy (as evidenced by follow-up actions on the recommendations of the School and Conference).

Head of Department

Dr. Samuel Kofi Badu-Nyarko

BA Hons (Political Science); M.Phil (Adult Education); PhD (Adult Education) University of Ghana; M.Ed (Curriculum Development) Lakehead University, Ontario, Canada