Learning Mathematics in English at Basic Schools in Ghana: A Benefit or Hindrance?

Eric Fredua-Kwarteng, Francis Ahia

APA 6th edition
Fredua-Kwarteng, E., & Ahia, F. (2015). Learning Mathematics in English at Basic Schools in Ghana: A Benefit or Hindrance?. European Journal of Educational Research, 4(3), 124-139. doi:10.12973/eu-jer.4.3.124

Fredua-Kwarteng E., and Ahia F. 2015 'Learning Mathematics in English at Basic Schools in Ghana: A Benefit or Hindrance?', European Journal of Educational Research , vol. 4, no. 3, pp. 124-139. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.12973/eu-jer.4.3.124

Chicago 16th edition
Fredua-Kwarteng, Eric and Ahia, Francis . "Learning Mathematics in English at Basic Schools in Ghana: A Benefit or Hindrance?". (2015)European Journal of Educational Research 4, no. 3(2015): 124-139. doi:10.12973/eu-jer.4.3.124


Facilitating effective mathematics learning and higher mathematics achievement have long been recognized as a key to the scientific and technological advancement of the African continent. While the central role that language proficiency plays in mathematics teaching and learning has received an overwhelming research attention in the literature over the past two decades, this is not the case among African policy-makers and political leaders. Drawing mainly from our professional experiences as mathematics educators and from the international research literature, our primary intent in this paper is to answer this question: How does the learning of mathematics in English at the basic school level help or hinder students’ mathematical proficiency? To answer this question, the paper is organized as follows. The first part, the introduction, gives little overview of the language of learning and teaching in Africa. The second part describes the method and conceptual framework undergirding the research. In the third section, we have analyzed the effects of mathematics learning and teaching through English for basic students whose mother tongue is a Ghanaian language. In the conclusion, we admit that mathematics learning difficulties cannot be attributed entirely to language factor and that mathematics anxiety also has a role to play.

Keywords: mathematics proficiency, english language, student culture, language of learning and teaching


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