The University has matriculated students of the College of Distance Education who were admitted to pursue various undergraduate and postgraduate programmes through distance for the 2018/2019 academic year.
A total of 15, 734 students comprising 14, 263 undergraduates and 1, 471 postgraduates were matriculated across the various zones in the country. In terms of gender distribution, the figure is made up of 8, 239 males and 7, 491. The undergraduate programmes comprise 7,373 males and 6, 890 females whiles 866 males and 605 females are pursuing postgraduate programmes. The number of undergraduates offering Education programmes is 10, 383 and those offering Business is 3,880. For the postgraduate studies, 554 are offering Education programmes whiles 917 are pursuing Business programmes.
Increase in Female Admissions
Speaking at the ceremony in Cape Coast, the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Joseph Ghartey Ampiah, was happy to note that the number of female students had increased whiles that of men had dropped as compared to last year’s figure. “The percentage of undergraduate men that entered the University through the distance mode has dropped from 53.2%, in the 2017/2018 academic year to 48.3% in the 2018/2019 academic year. This shows an increase in 1.5% of female population over last year’s increase of 0.9%” he stated.
Prof. Ampiah congratulated the women for exceeding last year’s admission enrolment adding that “I am happy that the prediction for improvement over last year’s percentage has been attained” Prof. Ampiah noted that the University was gradually moving towards a 50:50 gender ratio for admission of students into the Distance Education programme which he explained had significant socio-economic implications for the family and the society in general. He urged women in the working class to take advantage of the convenience and flexibility distance education offered and enrol to improve their economic, political and social lots.
The Vice-Chancellor announced that plans were far advanced by the College to roll out a virtual classroom facility for postgraduate studies. He indicated that the facility would enable students to access lectures wherever they found themselves.
Prof. Ampiah said following the restructuring of the College some programmes which were offered on the mainstream have been approved to be rolled out through distance mode. “ “This will enable students to easily transfer their credits from the distance mode to the regular mode or vice versa,” he explained. He announced that the Bachelor of Early Childhood has been introduced whiles the Bachelor of Commerce and the Bachelor of Management Studies programmes have been replaced with B.Sc. (Marketing), B.Sc. (Finance), BSc. (Human Resource Management), and B.Sc. (Accounting).
Prof. Ampiah noted that programmes from the Faculties of Arts and Social Sciences would be mounted on distance in the future. “The intention is to bring on board as many programmes as possible that are run in the conventional system to the distance mode so that applicants will have a variety in the choice of programmes,” he explained.
Decentralisation of CoDE's Services
The Vice-Chancellor informed the students that most of the activities of the College have been decentralised to the regional offices. He asked them to go to the regional offices to address their issues. “Regional Coordinators are available at all these offices to address the needs of students at the first instance before any issue is referred to the centre in Cape Coast” he added. He told them that Assistant Registrars were being appointed to the regional centres to take charge of all administrative issues adding that “I will encourage you to make maximum use of these services and use the staff at the Regional Offices in order to reduce the risk of travelling all the way to Cape Coast”.
Prof. Ampiah indicated that the Student Records Management Unit of the College had developed an online Student Support System to allow students to communicate their complaints to the College for quick and prompt redress. He urged the students to also make maximum use of the service.
Advice to Matriculants
The Vice-Chancellor reminded the students that the distance education programme was not like the conventional mode where students had a lot of time to themselves for their academic work. “You will have to make a lot of sacrifices to enable you complete the programme on schedule and also be successful. Those ahead of you have done it so you can also do it,” he advised them. He asked them to manage their time very well, especially those who had to combine work with family life.
On library Services, Prof. Ampiah said the University provided both physical and virtual library services as well as support services for distance students in their research work. He entreated them to take advantage of the unique opportunity to improve themselves. “A new chapter has opened in your life and what you will become in future will depend on what you make of the experiences you go through from now. At the end of your programme, we expect you to offer quality service to your families, society and the country at large” he urged them.
Zones for the Matriculation
The matriculation ceremony was held in three zones of CoDE thus, Southern Zone, Middle and Northern Zones. For the Southern Zone the matriculation ceremony was held in two centres. Students from the Central and Western Regions had their matriculation in Cape Coast whiles students Greater Accra and Volta Regions converged in Accra for the ceremony.
Middle Zone’s matriculation was held in Kumasi for students from Ashanti and Brong Ahafo Regions as well as some part of the Eastern Region. The Pro Vice-Chancellor, Prof. George K. T. Oduro spoke on behalf of the Vice-Chancellor. In the Northern Zone, distance students from Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions had their matriculation ceremony at the Tamale for the matriculation ceremony.