Teaching Citizenship Education in Ghana Basic Schools: The Quest to Achieve Patriotism and Democracy





Ghana basic schools, citizenship education, National Commission for Civic Education, primary school curriculum, democracy, patriotism


In Ghana, citizenship education aims to inculcate in pupils the behaviours, values and attitudes that enhance democracy and patriotism to produce efficient global citizens. However, Ghana is confronted with numerous social vices and atrocities due to pseudo-citizens who suppress the achievement of the country’s citizenship education objectives. Moreover, the reasons why citizenship education has not been able to achieve its objectives are unfounded. Using John Rawls’ theory for civic education, this study sought to identify the reasons for teaching citizenship education; assess if the teaching of citizenship education has achieved its objectives; identify the challenges that militate against the teaching of citizenship education; and identify the strategies that need to be adopted to improve the teaching of citizenship education. A triangulation mixed-methods approach was adopted. Quantitatively, 456 teachers from 72 schools participated in a questionnaire survey. Qualitatively, eight teachers participated in a semi-structured interview. In addition, there was a content analysis of the citizenship education syllabus objectives and the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) objectives. The results revealed that teaching citizenship education can help promote democracy and patriotism, but the objectives of teaching citizenship education are yet to be achieved. Moreover, challenges, such as a lack of trained teachers to teach citizenship education lessons and teaching-learning materials, militate against teaching citizenship education. However, it was found that providing specially trained teachers to teach citizenship education could salvage the situation. Moreover, it is recommended that the government, non-governmental organisations (NGOs), development partners, and volunteers should provide resources for the NCCE and institutions and assign specially trained teachers to teach citizenship education lessons in schools. Furthermore, the citizenship education syllabus needs to elaborate on the social vices in society to nurture citizens of noble character for posterity.


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How to Cite

Donkoh, Ruth, Wing On Lee, and Josephine Donkor. “Teaching Citizenship Education in Ghana Basic Schools: The Quest to Achieve Patriotism and Democracy”. International Journal of Educational Development in Africa, 25 pages. https://doi.org/10.25159/2312-3540/12221.



Received 2022-09-08
Accepted 2024-02-21
Published 2024-04-04