Functional or Dysfunctional? An Analysis of the Outcomes of Students-Management Conflicts in the University for Development Studies from 1999 to 2009
John Yaw Akparep

This paper sought to ascertain the outcomes of the conflicts between students and management of the University for Development Studies from 1999 to 2009. Data were collected using questionnaires and interview guides. Forty respondents were used for the study. Data analysis was done qualitatively by using narratives and direct quotes from respondents. The paper established that the conflicts exhibited both negative and positive outcomes. The negative outcomes included: the loss of productive teaching and learning contact hours, shortening of the academic calendar, closure of the School, prevalence of insecurity, increased social vices, low student performance in examinations and withdrawal of students for poor performance. The positive outcomes included: helping build, define and balance students’ needs with management and helping them face and address issues in a clear and conscious manner, helping enhance interpersonal communication, improving the University climate, and improving the capacity to respect and appreciate different perspectives. They also constructively helped in correcting some management ills and lapses. The study concluded that the conflicts led to low productivity and tarnished the reputation of the University despite the fact that they transformed governance of the University. The study recommended intensification of the teaching of courses on peace and conflicts management in the University to all students; highlighting how students are the worst affected by conflicts in the University and the need to minimize their occurrences if they cannot be avoided. Management should also take refresher courses in conflicts management to enable them handle conflicts properly and minimize dysfunctional outcomes.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jgpc.v10n1a2