The goal of this programme is to equip graduates with the philosophical, critical and analytical skills for researching, teaching and developing sustainable solutions to the opportunities and challenges in adopting, implementing and using information systems in the local communities, firms, institutions in Ghana, Africa and beyond.
In relation to the above goals, the following objectives are outlined:
First, the PhD Information Systems program, established in 2013, is accredited by the National Accreditation Board (Accredited, 2017-2020). NAB ensures that qualifications obtained from these institutions are comparable to international standards and acceptable to employers/institutions both in Ghana and overseas. Second, the host department belongs to the UG Business School which is accredited by the Association of African Business Schools. In June 2018, the school also completed the European Foundation for Management Development Deans Across Frontier (EDAF) process. The European Foundation for Management Development (EFMD) is a globally recognized international association for the accreditation of business schools and corporations. Our PhD IS programme is indexed on the Association of Information Systems global website (http://bit.ly/2RIUq8a)
To be admitted into the programme, first, the minimum qualification is a Masters degree in management information systems, Computer Science, Information Studies, or relevant information technology related field from an accredited university. Applicants who have a Masters degree from an accredited university and have a relevant experience (not less than 2 years) in working in an information systems or information related field are also considered. Second, the applicant must be a holder of a first degree from an accredited university. The first degree should be a minimum of second class lower division. Applicants who satisfy these requirements will be short-listed and interviewed to select the best for the programme.
PhD IS application is open year round. However, there are two admission intakes: January and August. The application process begins online. There is a dedicated admissions website for postgraduate programmes: http://admission.ug.edu.gh/
International applicants are expected to pay to the University a non-refundable application processing fee of US$110.00. Payment can be made online. Ghanaian nationals are required to buy an e-voucher from a local bank and continue the process through an online application form. Upon the above payments the applicant continue through an online application form:
The documents to be scanned and uploaded online are: first and second degree certificates and transcripts; and PhD Research Proposal. The details of the three referees should also be provided. Applicants who satisfy the admission requirements will be short-listed by Host Department (in April for August Admission and in October for January Admission) and interviewed to select the best for the program. Students will be required to do a presentation of their PhD proposal in-person or through video-conferencing (e.g Skype). During the interview, students’ ability to pay the prescribed fees would also be verified. Students are scored over 100 points and best students (scoring above 70 percent) and fit of research interests are selected per availability of supervisors. Applicants are advised to contact a potential supervisor before applying. Students are notified of admission status online through the admission platform. The online admission applications system is only in English.
The duration of the programme is four years for a full-time and six years for a part-time program. The first year is a course work period, in which the students develop qualitative and quantitative skills, an understanding of philosophy and theories of information systems and knowledge in contemporary topics such as business intelligence and trends in the design, development, implementation, usage and impact of information systems.
The second year consists of a comprehensive examination and experiential learning program. The comprehensive examination is completed in the first six weeks of the second year and students are required to conduct a literature review on a contemporary research area, write a research paper based on a gap identified in the research area and a present these papers to his or her PhD committee (consisting of 2 to 4 supervisors). Upon passing the comprehensive examination, students progress to the experiential learning programme. The experiential learning programme focuses on guiding students to put theory into practice by engaging in supervised research projects that will require them to apply the theories and skills they have acquired into gathering data, analysing them, writing reports, and presenting them at academic seminars, conferences and workshops. The students are mentored to expand their comprehensive examination research papers and publish them through conferences and journals. The students are also placed with industry partners and government agencies to conduct research and develop solutions relevant to a specific research area. By the end of the experiential learning, the student should have been able work with the PhD Committee to develop a research proposal, literature review, methodology and preliminary data analysis reports in a specific research area towards the PhD program. In the third and fourth years, the student are supervised to complete the PhD research by completing the writing of the respective chapters, publishing in reputable journals and presenting research works at reputable conferences.
To complete the PhD, students are required to pass all required courses in year one, the comprehensive examination, four departmental PhD seminars, the thesis examination (marking of thesis by two external examiners and one internal examiner and a public defense with the examiners). Per the University regulations, students have the option of undertaking the PhD by writing a monograph or by publication of papers. However, within the OMIS department, PhD IS students are only able to submit the thesis for examination after publishing at least one paper in a Scopus/Web of Science Indexed Journal and two conference papers at relevant IS conferences (Association of Information Systems, Association for Computing Machinery and Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers). The department encourages students with the mantra that, a thesis with published outputs is more likely to be passed. The Graduation Requirements are the attainment of Course Work: 18 – 27 credits; PhD Seminars: 12 credits and Thesis: 45 credits. The degree to be awarded upon successful completion of the graduation requirements is PhD Information Systems.