Evaluation of Population Census Data and Population Growth in Ghana through Demographic Analysis

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Ghana takes a census of its population every 10 years. The census has important ramifications for many aspects of society. The study explores the historical contexts of population census through ancient practices to modern development in population studies. It explores Ghana’s population trends over a fifty-year period (1960-2010); examines parameters involved in demographic analysis of the population; explores differences in the results of the same period, using different models; and investigates some limiting factors which inhibit population growth. The research design, the study area, data collection methods and instruments, validation of the instruments, limitations and the procedure for data analysis were discussed. Statistical instruments, Malthus’ Exponential model and Verhulst’s Logistic model, are most useful in determining population growth. Specifically, in Ghana, births exceed deaths by mean 17.86 per 1000 persons, population grows exponentially at 1.78% on average; each addition to population also produces compounding accelerating effect on population size. From the foregoing discussions, logistic growth model is more reliable than the simplified exponential growth model, but together they provide us with the size and growth of Ghana’s population over the study period. To conclude, as the total population continues to rise, there should be corresponding and appropriate methods and sources for calculating population size and growth, which would give a total human population figure at any given time. However, owing to lack of professional demographer, statisticians and seasoned computer analysts, the total population figure should not be taken as the truthful number.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Mathematics, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree Master of Science.October, 2011