The Ghana Psychological Association (GPA), is the largest, oldest and the only all-encompassing Association of practitioners and researchers in the field of Psychology and applied Psychology in Ghana. It is a legal entity, having been registered by the Registrar General’s Department and recognised by the Ghana Psychology Council (GPC), the state regulator (vide Act 857) of such Associations and its members.GPA’s history can be outlined in three phases namely: the period before 2000, the period from 2000 to 2012 and finally, the period from 2012 to the present.

From August 1996 to May 1997 a series of workshops were held in the University of Cape Coast (UCC), University of Ghana (UG), Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and the Ghana Education Service (GES) These workshops discussed Career Advisory Services organized at these institutions and they were aimed at strengthening the quality of the services in the universities. Participants were drawn from disciplines that offered psychological services to students. Ten (10) of these participants committed and resolved to form an association of psychologists. These were:


1. Dr. J. K. Essuman (now Prof.) – Department of Educational Foundations, UCC

2. Mr. R. B. Montford (Deceased) – Department of Educational Foundations,


3. Dr. Rose Schroeder – Department of Psychology, UG, Legon

4. Dr. K. Ansah-Yamoah (Deceased) –Director of Counselling Services, KNUST

5. Mr. E. G. S. Azumah – Registrar’s Department, KNUST

6. Mrs. Emefa E. Bonsi (now Dr.) – Counselling and Placement Centre, UG,


7. Miss Ama Afo Blay – Guidance and Counselling Unit, GES, Accra (then


8. Godfred Finkor – Economics Department, UG, Legon

9. Dr. (Mrs.) Araba Sefah-Dede – Department of Psychiatry, UGMS, Korle-Bu

10. Mr. Alex Wiafe – Counselling and Placement Centre, UG, Legon



Although these persons were willing to form the association, there were many quiet periods while some other professionals also joined in to try to bring this dream to fruition. Among such later entrants were Prof. Nathaniel K. Pecku (the father of Guidance & Counselling Psychology in Ghana) who hosted the very first formal meeting of this group. At that first meeting, the association was named the Psychological

Association of Ghana (PAG) and it was to be an umbrella association for all specializations of psychology including special education. The plan to draft a constitution did not materialize until a few years later. Other members worthy of mention for their various roles are Professors D. K., Fobih, S. A Danquah, J. Y Opoku in the very early years to be joined by Professors Koawo Edjah (then Mr.), and Linda Naa Dzama Forde (now Prof.). The group went silent from 1998 until February 1999 when they reactivated to change the name of the association to Ghana Psychological Association (GPA). The constitution of GPA was eventually drafted in 1999 and a plan to develop a Code of Ethics, development of a Psychology Act, and design of a logo was undertaken.

GPA was in full flight and inaugurated on the 21st July 2000. Its NEC comprised the following:

Prof. Joseph Kwesi Essuman President

Prof. J. Y. Opoku (UG) Vice President

Mr. Koawo Edjah (UCC) Secretary

Dr. Rose Schroeder (UG) Assistant Secretary

Mrs. Linda Dzama Forde (UCC) Treasurer

Ms. Hannah Odoom (UCEW) Assistant Treasurer



The Association began a yearly conference that brought members together most of whom were academicians. These conferences discussed pertinent national issues at the time. A journal was launched, The Ghana Psychological Journal. It is not clear what happened but another period of silence occurred between 2007 to 2010. The wakeup call that occurred in 2010 saw some members initiate for the psychology act to be passed in parliament in 2011. A series of meetings to get legislators to understand, that they could not add psychologists to allied health professions in one Act. Instead, it asked to have a separate Act that covers the many subfields of psychology was proposed. This Act was to regulate the profession and practice of Psychology. Rev. Dr Dinah Baah-Odoom played a key role together with others including Prof. S. A. Danquah, and Prof. Angela Ofori-Atta. This movement is what earned the profession a separation in the Health Professions Regulatory Bodies Act, 2013 (Act 857).

In 2012, a three-person ad hoc committee was set up to revive the Association. Prof. C. C. Mate-Kole (UG), who chaired this committee worked with Prof. Linda Naa Dzama Forde (UCC) and Mr. Kwarteng Ofosuhene Mensah (UCC). They reviewed and restructured GPA documents, the Association’s executive structure, recruitment of members and renewed the Association’s registration with the Registrar General’s Department (RGD) and the formation of an Electoral Commission. By November of 2012 GPA had been revived from its coma yet again and collaborated with the University of Ghana Medical School, Korle-Bu and the Department of Psychology of the University of Ghana to hold a two-day conference. In 2013, a NEC was in place. Since then, GPA has been in full flight building on its gains from one administrative NEC to the other. The Association is truly becoming a professional association, embracing all psychology professionals. It has an active membership of over two hundred in good standing as at the time of preparing this document. Professional, student, honorary, associate and lay practitioner members, form this number.