About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 4047-4053
Publication year: 2017
ISBN: 978-84-697-3777-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2017.1871

Conference name: 9th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 3-5 July, 2017
Location: Barcelona, Spain

WOMEN AND DISTANCE EDUCATION: EXPERIENCES FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF GHANA DISTANCE EDUCATION PROGRAMME

A.O. Adu-Marfo, I.K. Biney

University of Ghana (GHANA)
The pursuit of education has undergone many revolutions over the decades. Technological innovation has created more dynamic platforms for learning. Full time on campus student learning is now giving way to non-traditional online studying. 21st century changes in communication technology are paving the way for more dynamic study on campus. In modern times and with the evolving multiplicity of roles, women seek to maximize their time, effort and energies to enable them meet diverse goals and objectives in terms of work, career, family, and social responsibilities.

Distance Education has come to be accepted as a viable alternative for providing higher education particularly to those marginalized sections of the population including women, who otherwise cannot make it to universities and colleges as full time students. The uniqueness of Distance Education lies in its use of pre-produced courses as the basis of study: Due to its ability to liberate learners from the constraints of time, space, age and study mode, unlike the traditional system, it is particularly appealing for women whose higher education may be interrupted by marriage, childbirth, child care, etc.

Understanding the experiences of students in distance learning is paramount to ensuring a progressive, effective and successful programme. This paper explores the realities of female students in distance learning. The paper highlights female students’ experiences with online learning, tutoring approaches and teaching styles within the University of Ghana Distance Education Programme (UGDEP). It throws more light on the positive stories as well as highlights the challenges and the potential barriers to distance learning from the female perspective, altogether providing resourceful information for improvement in decisions and policy making.

It uses the qualitative approach through Narratives to gather information from 15 randomly selected female students who study different courses at the Distance Education campus of the University of Ghana. Respondents were engaged in in-depth face to face interviews lasting about 10 – 15 minutes and were asked open ended questions. Responses were recorded and transcribed for further analysis. Data was analyzed by coding and using thematic categories.

Some of the key findings were that there still exists some gender gaps in fully embracing technology as a useful means of study. This has major implications for providing technological support and tutoring support to female students. The paper recommends the integration of learning technologies into the curriculum as this will aid in the development of women’s skill building and confidence and enhance full participation. It further recommends a critical look at the content, structure, and lecturing styles of the Distance Education Programme. It suggests the development of a more coherent strategy to enhance its overall effectiveness.
@InProceedings{ADUMARFO2017WOM,
author = {Adu-Marfo, A.O. and Biney, I.K.},
title = {WOMEN AND DISTANCE EDUCATION: EXPERIENCES FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF GHANA DISTANCE EDUCATION PROGRAMME},
series = {9th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN17 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-697-3777-4},
issn = {2340-1117},
doi = {10.21125/edulearn.2017.1871},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/edulearn.2017.1871},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona, Spain},
month = {3-5 July, 2017},
year = {2017},
pages = {4047-4053}}
TY - CONF
AU - A.O. Adu-Marfo AU - I.K. Biney
TI - WOMEN AND DISTANCE EDUCATION: EXPERIENCES FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF GHANA DISTANCE EDUCATION PROGRAMME
SN - 978-84-697-3777-4/2340-1117
DO - 10.21125/edulearn.2017.1871
PY - 2017
Y1 - 3-5 July, 2017
CI - Barcelona, Spain
JO - 9th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN17 Proceedings
SP - 4047
EP - 4053
ER -
A.O. Adu-Marfo, I.K. Biney (2017) WOMEN AND DISTANCE EDUCATION: EXPERIENCES FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF GHANA DISTANCE EDUCATION PROGRAMME, EDULEARN17 Proceedings, pp. 4047-4053.
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