Lecturers have been advised to be mindful of their delivery strategies during classes.
According to the Director of the Centre for Teaching Support, Prof. D.D. Adjei, the methods some lecturers adopt to teach make teaching and learning unattractive to students who sometimes lose interest in the subject.
He said: “Some of the methods use by lectures are largely teacher centered which brings about low cognitive learning”.
Prof. Agyei was speaking at a forum organised by the School of Agriculture on the theme “Enhancing the Competitiveness of the School of Agriculture of the University of Cape Coast as an institution of Choice in Ghana”. Prof. Agyei, who was speaking on the topic “ Being an Effective Lecturer”, said effective lecturing was characterized by enthusiasm and impressiveness, clarity and interaction.
The forum, held at the C.A Ackah Auditorium 900, was to take stock of academic activities of the School over the years and also find ways to address key challenges facing it.
Prof. Agyei wondered why in the 21st century, some lecturers still dictate notes in the classroom for students to copy.
This method of teaching, Prof. Agyei pointed out, makes students to indulge in “chew and pour “ to pass quizzes, mid-semester examination and end- of -semester examination.
He added: “there is hardly any kind of learning in class, concept formation is so much abstract and there is so much emphasis on assessment. So students are only interested about what will come in the quiz, mid or end of semester examinations".
Prof. Agyei stressed that such methods of teaching had adverse effects on students that were churned out each year by tertiary institutions. He said the time had come for lecturers to adopt a paradigm shift in their teaching methods to impact positively on their students. “The kind of teaching we use in our classrooms has a role to play because it eventually impacts on the turnout of the students we are producing”, he said.
Effective lecturers, according to him, combine the talents of the scholar, writer, producer, comedian, entertainer and teacher to promote student learning.
Prof Agyei pointed out that some of the common lecturing errors included disorganization, over-reliance on teaching method, distracting dress, no break, nervous mannerisms, among others. He said an effective lecturer used the principle of good teaching, plans thoroughly, reflects, evaluates and manages problems strategically.He touched on the six principles of good teaching, which included seeking and incorporating feedback from students and ensuring research enhancement teaching.
Other speakers at the programme were a Senior lecturer at the Department of Animal Science, Sir. Kt. Prof. A. Annan-Prah, who treated the topic “Being an Effective Student,” and the Vice-Dean of the School of Agriculture, Prof Henry de-Graft Acquah, gave a presentation on "Enrolment Trends in the School of Agriculture." Also, a Senior Assistant Registrar at the Institute of Education, Mr. David Larbi, spoke on the topic “Being an Effective Administrator”.
In his remarks, the Dean of the School, Prof. Elvis Asare Bediako, said the School was considering introducing Bsc. Agricultural Education and it would also collaborate with Institute of Education to roll out sandwich programmes. He announced that plans were afoot to commercialise some of the activities of the University Farm and the Meat Processing Unit.
The forum was also used to discuss the general overview of enrolment trends in the School of Agriculture. The Director of Academic Affairs, Mr. Jeff Onyame, was also present at the forum.