Ghanaian English

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Ghanaian schoolchildren at an English primary school.

Ghanaian English is a variety of English spoken in Ghana. English is the official language of Ghana, and is used as a lingua franca throughout the state.[1] English is the most used of the 11 official languages spoken in Ghana.[1]


Of the more than 27 million people in Ghana, more than half of the population uses English, and most use English exclusively.[1] Most primary and secondary school classes are taught in English only.


Due to Ghana's colonial history, Ghanaian English most closely resembles British English, although it is wildly varied and deviates from the standard in many ways based on location and context.

In contrast to the twelve monophthongal vowels of Received Pronunciation, Ghanaian English has only seven, an attribute shared with other forms of African English.[2] Ghanaian English exhibits several mergers including the fleece-kit, goose foot, and thought-cloth mergers.[2]

The voiceless alveolo-palatal sibilant [ɕ] is the usual realization of /ʃ/ (as in "ship" and "chicago") and Voiceless alveolo-palatal affricate [tɕ] is usual realization of /tʃ/ (as in "cheese" and ""watching") and Voiced postalveolar affricate [dʑ] is usual realization /dʒ/ (as in "general" and "magic") in Ghanaian English.[3]


  • Huber, Magnus (2004), "Ghanaian English: phonology", in Schneider, Edgar W.; Burridge, Kate; Kortmann, Bernd; Mesthrie, Rajend; Upton, Clive, A handbook of varieties of English, 1: Phonology, Mouton de Gruyter, pp. 842–865, ISBN 3-11-017532-0