Monkey dey work, baboon dey chop? Lecturers/supervisors that take advantage of their students in scientific publications in Ghana

Wednesday, June 28, 2023.

I have discussed scientific publication in Ghana extensively on many social media platforms. Today, I share the experiences of two people who felt cheated by their lecturers/supervisors. I have their permission to share their stories.

Person 1:

When I was an undergrad, I did data analysis and discussion for a lecturer. She told me we were writing a paper together. The paper was published with only her name as a solo author. And above that, she acknowledged another course mate as helping her with typesetting and proofreading. When I confronted her, she lamely explained that I missed her deadline of submitting the analysis. But it was that same analysis and discussion appearing in the paper. And later when I was done with school and going back to the dept. for national service, she told the HoD not to select me because I am not research- oriented

The HoD called me and asked what was going on. After explaining to him. He told me I have a whole life ahead and I should expect these kinds of people in academia.

I sometimes feel bad about the approach the HoD used in solving this problem, but I have learned lessons though.


Person 2:

My undergrad research work was published but not until when I was applying for a second degree that I found out that per the position of my name in the work, the credit goes to my supervisor and other lecturers in the department, even the head of department. I was deeply hurt when I got to know because I really struggled my way through, not having laptop of my own and borrowing with it’s frustrations and all. The sleepless nights and how I like things to be meticulously done. It was a qualitative study and was recorded. We collected our data independently and I did the transcription virtually alone.
On the day of defence, one of the panelists sent for me at the end of the day requesting for details of the work to be sent to her. I informed my supervisor who told me not to do so and that she believes she is intrigued by the work. She then asked me to submit everything to her which I did. Only to be told sometime after graduation that the work is publishable and so they’ll update us on it’s progress. I did not understand the nitty gritties of these then. A friend of mine asked me to go for all the originals of the data collected but it was too late.
When I look back, I wonder why and how people could be desperately wicked!

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