Studying abroad can be a more meaningful and invigorating learning experience than at home—both inside and outside of the classroom. You may be more curious and alert than you usually are so use this heightened energy to enhance your studies as well as your cultural and geographical explorations. You may also encounter different teaching styles and course processes; be prepared to adapt and to learn.
You will enroll in 12-18 credits per semester comprised of courses taught specifically for USAC students and courses selected from an array of offerings at the University of Ghana. Although enrollment in a language course is not a requirement of the program, it is strongly recommended that students enroll in Twi Conversation and Culture I, which will increase their understanding of Ghanaian culture and equip them with language and cross-cultural skills that will be of assistance in day-to-day life abroad. Course availability is contingent upon student enrollment and is subject to change.
Enhance your studies through non-credit workshops designed to provide opportunities for deeper engagement with unique aspects of Ghanaian life and culture.
Deepen your academic experience by turning the optional Kumasi and Volta Eco tours into a 1-credit field study by completing additional academic requirements (readings, research, written assignments, reports, etc.) on the historical, cultural, and natural features of the region. Participation in both tours is required to enroll in the Field Study.
You have the unique opportunity to experience Ghanaian culture and society through a service learning course and work in a variety of settings, which includes opportunities like teaching/tutoring at an elementary school, working at a local orphanage, assisting with advocacy and awareness programs at the West African Aids Foundation, training and fundraising opportunities at a community development NGO, working at the Accra Zoo or West African Primate Conservation Action, assisting at a local dance or theater company and others based on request. Some organizations may charge a one-time fee for the service learning or volunteering placement. You will learn more about the available opportunities during your on-site orientation and your placement will be confirmed at that time based on your interests and organizations' needs.
Family, Society and Development in Ghana/Africa
Spring (Sociology; 400-level; 3 credits)
The characteristics of the family and society in Africa (sub-Saharan Africa in particular, including Ghana) are quite distinct in several aspects. Social Anthropologists have studied and recorded these among the various peoples in the region. The study of African families and societies has been of interest since its contact with the West. In more recent times, the attention of students and scholars in Africa and elsewhere who study African families and societies has been on the socio-cultural transformations that have been taking place in them. To a large extent, the transformations have been consequences of the processes of modernization or development.
Ghanaian Culture and Natural Resources Field Study
Fall (Political Science; 400-level; 1 credit)
Spring (Political Science; 400-level; 1 credit)
USAC offers a one credit field studies course in Ghanaian culture and natural resources. USAC encourages every student to participate in the field studies course. However, this segment of the program is optional and enrollment in the field studies course is necessary to participate on the trip itself. A fee is charged for the field trip to cover transportation, and room and board.
Co-requisite: Enrollment in the optional Northern Ghana and Volta Eco Tours.
This course has an additional fee for transportation and room and board.
Fall (Community Health Sciences; 300-level; 3 credits)
Spring (Community Health Sciences; 300-level; 3 credits)
This course is directed towards the student who wants to deepen his/her knowledge of global health and how preventive and promotive work can be carried on from an international perspective. This course also provides an introduction to problems involved in assessing international health needs and designing, implementing, managing, and evaluating public health programs in international settings. Topics include: issues in global health; major health problems and concerns of developing vs. developed countries; international health organizations; international health care systems and health development assistance; development of population/demographic transition; the global economy and health; access to medical care; cultural differences; emerging crises in global health.
Historical Perspectives on Political and Economic Development in Africa
Fall (Political Science, Sociology; 400-level; 3 credits)
Ghana's historical destitution continues to hinder the process of its social, cultural, political, and economic development. This course will explore the disparities in national and international Ghanaian policy objectives as it pursues cultural, political, and economic stability. Students will have the opportunity to meet and speak with members of the Ghanaian business and political community.
Fall (Service Learning, Social Work, Sociology; 400-level; 1 - 3 credits)
Spring (Service Learning, Social Work, Sociology; 400-level; 1 - 3 credits)
Service learning combines community service with academic instruction, focusing on critical, reflective thinking and personal and civic responsibility. Service learning programs involve students in activities that address community-identified needs, while developing their academic skills and commitment to their community.
Strategies for Social Development
Spring (Social Work; 300-level; 3 credits)
This course is intended to help students understand various strategies employed to achieve social development. Strategies for social development involve complex processes, and while some may be effective, other strategies may be ineffective. The course will explore a number of these strategies, provide students with some capacity to appraise the roles of development organizations in the development processes, and assess the intent and consequences of international aid. It examines major social issues, emphasizes the social consequences of globalization, North/ South power relations and structural adjustment programs. It analyses the dynamic relationship between social issues and development.
The course explores differences between effective and ineffective strategies for social and community development. It examines the context of development in Ghana, the role of NGOs and government agencies and relationships between the two sectors. Additionally, it focuses on a cross- section of strategies employed by government agencies and the NGO sector in areas of reproductive health, food security and poverty alleviation and community development.
Twi Conversation and Culture I
Fall (Twi; 100-level; 3 credits)
Spring (Twi; 100-level; 3 credits)
This language course is designed to provide basic communicative competence in oral and written Twi for beginners. It will focus on the structure of the language as well as the culture of the people. The areas covered include:
• parts of speech, e.g. nouns, verbs, pronouns, particles, determiners
• greetings and responses, bargaining, giving directions
• elements of Akan culture and acceptable behavior
Twi Conversation and Culture II
Spring (Twi; 100-level; 3 credits)
This class builds upon your basic knowledge and communication skills in Akan language. You will learn more about the social contexts of greetings, how to talk about time, the family, food, games, travel and more. Cultural lessons are part of language learning and you will learn how to appropriately find out information from others, understand various symbols used in specific social contexts and how one is expected to behave in a given social context. You will also learn more about the pattern of pronunciation of Akan words, how to produce and recognize tonal contrasts, forming, understanding and using different kinds of complex sentences, complex tense/aspect/mood combinations.