Private universities continue to pay hefty affiliation fees to their mentor universities, Business24 analysis of a report by the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission (GTEC), the regulator of tertiary education in the country, has shown.
The affiliation system is a relationship agreement between a newly established tertiary institution and a chartered tertiary institution. The objective is to ensure the attainment and maintenance of high standards for the promotion of academic quality.
The report revealed that affiliate institutions pay a range of fees which include dollarised institutional fees, programme subscription fees, and admission fees levied by the mentor institutions.
“Fees paid by university colleges to mentor institutions include university affiliation fees, programme affiliation fees, and external moderation fees for questions, marked examination scripts and long essays,” the report, titled “Ghana—Assessment of the Mandatory Requirement for Affiliation and Mentorship”, said.
“Additional charges include certificate and transcript issuance fees, students’ enrolment fees, and sitting allowances for prescribed meetings of committees with mentor’s representative,” it added.
The report said apart from fees levied by the mentoring institutions, university colleges also pay accreditation fees to GTEC for accreditation renewals and approval of new programmes.
According to the report, a private university college pays between US$5,000 and US$7,000 to a mentoring institution, which is renewable annually. Again, a private university pays GH¢6,000 as programme accreditation fee and GH¢3,000 to the Ghana Tertiary Education Commission for a certificate.
Aside these obligations, a private university pays US$15 per student to a mentoring university.
These financial requirements, the report said, have overburdened most private universities and denied them resources for innovation and infrastructure development.
Meanwhile, the government has enacted the Education Regulatory Bodies Act 2020, which has scrapped the affiliation policy and requires all existing private university colleges currently under affiliation to expedite action towards chartering.