Author: redearth

Book Launch: Teacher Education Transformative Agency

March 3 2021 – 11h00 – 12h00

Stellenbosch University and African Sun Media invite you to the launch of Teacher Education for Transformative Agency: Critical Perspectives on Design, Content and Pedagogy. This book records and explores efforts by academic staff members within the Faculty of Education at Stellenbosch University, South Africa, responding to the demands of a new programme in initial teacher education. It examines how curriculum design unfolds across disciplines in the PGCE programme, and crucially, the commonalities in the presentation of course material. The editors and authors will speak to Prof Viv Ellis from Monash University in Australia elaborating on the topics discussed in the book.

Register here for the webinar

The book: Teacher Education Transformative Agency

Critical perspectives on design, content and pedagogy

Editors: Carina AmericaNazeem EdwardsMaureen Robinson

Many teacher education programs globally are undergoing significant changes in response to government policy, imperatives driven by global competitiveness, as well as local conditions. This is particularly relevant in the South African context where teacher education seeks to navigate from the ravages of apartheid education towards addressing the developmental needs of the majority of its citizens.

This book records and explores efforts by academic staff members within the Faculty of Education at Stellenbosch University, South Africa, responding to the demands of a new program in initial teacher education. It brings together diverse views seeking to present a coherent program in the Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE). It examines how curriculum design unfolds across disciplines in the program, and crucially, the commonalities in the presentation of course material. Lecturers examine the purpose, structure and content of their teaching as they engage with putting democratic policy goals into practice in the core, as well as subject-specific modules of the program.

Printed: R365.00.   E-book: R295.00

Order: az.oc.aidemnusnacirfanull@sredro (printed) or (ebook)

Filed under: News about education

PLENARY PANEL: TUESDAY OCTOBER 23rd 2018 How sustainable and viable is multilingualism for higher education purposes in South Africa?

The realisation of Constitutional provisions as regards the use of all eleven languages for education, remain a mirage in South Africa. Recent judgments regarding languages for teaching and learning, as media of instruction, in the context of Unisa and the UFS seem to prophecy a monolingual higher education context in which English becomes a hegemonic language in the absence of viable alternatives. Furthermore, those alternatives are neither desired in terms of African language speakers themselves, or are resisted in terms of the use of a language like Afrikaans. In both the court judgments the education merits of multilingualism are lost and in the media the political and ideological positions dominate. This panel will debate the issues and consider how we move beyond the impasse.

PANEL CHAIR: Robert Balfour

Robert Balfour is currently the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Teaching and Learning) at the North-West University. After being awarded a Commonwealth Trust Scholarship in 1997, he completed his doctoral degree in English language at Corpus Christi College in Cambridge. He held fellowships at the Institute for Commonwealth Studies at the University of London, Clare Hall at Cambridge University, and the Institute of Education at the University of London. His previous book on literary-cultural studies Culture Capital and Representation (with Palgrave, 2010) was received with critical acclaim. In 2015 the book, Education in a new South Africa: crisis and change was published by CUP.  He is a C2 NRF rated researcher. In 2011 he was appointed as Dean of the Faculty of Education Sciences on the Potchefstroom Campus of NWU, and led the restructuring of the Faculty in 2013, and from 2016-2017 led the Education Joint Executive Task Team (Edu-JET) as Coordinating Dean responsible for the planning and transition towards an integrated single-Faculty structure for the three campuses of the NWU, Besides being an applied linguist, postcolonial literary critic and educationist, Balfour is an exhibited painter.


Susan Coetzee-Van Rooy is the deputy dean: research and innovation in the  faculty of humanities at the North-West University. She is also professor of English and a researcher in the research focus area Understanding and Processing Language in complex settings (UPSET). Susan holds a C1 rating from the NRF, and is currently also chairperson of a number of rating panels for the NRF. Her research considers why and when people choose to use particular languages, and how they combine their different languages to perform different functions in their private and public lives, and before that, how they come to learn particular languages, and how they perceive their proficiencies in their various languages.


Rosemary Wildsmith-Cromarty a PhD from the University of London. She has been a Visiting Scholar at SOAS, University of London, University of Guadalahara, Mexico, Wilfred Laurier University, Ontario, Canada and Dalian Maritime University, China. She currently holds the Research chair for Early Childhood Development and Education at North-West University. Her publications focus on multilingualism, language acquisition, language teaching and language policy. She is currently interested in language education and  cognitive development and how learners navigate their developmental path in linguistically complex learning environments.


Mbulungeni Madiba is an Associate Professor and Deputy Dean in the Centre of Higher Education Development (CHED) at the University of Cape Town. He is a Mandela Fellow at Harvard University and an Oppenheimer Fellow at the University of London. He obtained his MA in African Languages and DLit et Phil in Linguistics at the University of South Africa. His main areas of research are language planning and policy, politics of language, language education, multilingual higher education and concept literacy. He has published widely on language planning and policy and multilingualism in South Africa.



Filed under: Conference

PLENARY PANEL: TUESDAY OCTOBER 23rd 2018 Diverse voices in educational research

 At the last 2017 SAERA conference, a critique was raised that the SAERA organisation and its conference needed to hear a more diverse range of voices about educational research, other than that of seasoned academics/ researchers/ experienced supervisors/ lecturers/specific institutional types, and to look at alternative formats to how conferences can be run to accommodate a more “social justice agenda”. The perspective (largely) of postgraduate students, was tabled at the SAERA Exec who asked the SAERA conference planners to consider hearing a more diverse set of perspectives about educational research from a broader range of stakeholders within the conference. Some of these matters have been addressed in the present conference: there is now a  developmental workshop for postgraduate students; the conference is being located to a “more affordable venue”; an invitation has been sent to UOTs’ Deans of Education to submit abstracts; the notices for conference have gone to all higher education institutions nation-wide; there are regional activities to decentralise the visibility of the organisation; more local than international speakers have been selected as plenary inputs; etc…. However, the panel is geared to reflect on what has been achieved to date in hearing the diverse voices of educational researchers, and what more still needs to be done.  The executive committee has considered that it might be useful to hear perspectives from a range of stakeholders about how they conceptualise the kinds of research (substantive content and form) that should be done by educational researchers within and outside university structures. Comments are  invited also about what shape and form conferencing about educational research in the specific South African    context should take. The panel members will each present a short input (+/-8minutes each) followed by a plenary discussion with conference delegates. This panel might be a useful opportunity to put in dialogue how educational research is viewed from multiple vantage points in order to promote a collaborative space for sharing interests and perspectives.

PANEL CHAIR: Michael Samuel

Michael Samuel is a Professor in the School of Education, University of KwaZulu-Natal. He holds  a Doctorate in Education from the University of Durban-Westville which focuses on a Force field model of teacher development. He has served as a curriculum designer of innovative masters and collaborative doctoral cohort programmes locally and internationally. He has also been a member of the Ministerial Committee on Teacher Education assisting the development of national teacher education policy in South Africa. He has served as Dean (Faculty of Education, UKZN). His research interest focuses on teacher professional development, higher education, life history and narrative inquiry. His book, Life history research: Epistemology, methodology and representation has inspired several studies of professional development in education and the health sciences. Continuity, complexity and change: Teacher education in Mauritius, explores the challenges and possibilities facing a small island in negotiating its presence in global and international discourse of comparative higher education and teacher education. His new book Disrupting higher education curriculum: Undoing cognitive damage explores options for imaginative redirection of higher education curriculum design. He has recently contributed to an international emergent discourse on the role of small islands developing states focusing on global partnerships for higher education research written collaboratively with a colleague in Mauritius where he runs a doctoral programme. He is the recipient of the Turquoise Harmony Institute’s National Ubuntu Award for Contribution to Education.


Ahmed Bawa currently holds the position of Chief Executive Officer of Universities South Africa (USAf). Until the end of April 2016, he was Vice-Chancellor and Principal of Durban University of Technology. Before that, he was a faculty member at Hunter College in the City University of New York as well as Associate Provost for Curriculum Development at Hunter College. He has led and coordinated the Ford Foundation’s African Higher Education Initiative. Ahmed Bawa holds a Ph.D. in Theoretical Physics from the University of Durham, in the UK.  He was an inaugural member of the National Advisory Council on Innovation and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of South Africa as well as the Academy of Science of South Africa.


Whitty Green is Chief-Director for Teaching and Learning Development in the South African Department of Higher Education and Training, and leads the work of the Department in respect of supporting the development of a university-based teacher education system that is able to produce sufficient numbers of high quality teachers for all   education sub—sectors; developing, implementing and monitoring policy and programmes to support and oversee the Department’s University Capacity Development Programme; and development of a coordinated system for the management of international postgraduate scholarship partnerships. Dr Green was formerly a school teacher, teacher training college lecturer and university academic.


Zahraa McDonald is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the Centre for International Teacher Education (CITE) at CPUT. She holds a PhD from the University of  Johannesburg that examines Islamic Education and post-secular citizenship in South Africa. Her thesis has been published titled Expressing post-secular citizenship: A madrasa, an ethic and comprehensive doctrine. She has completed a postdoctoral fellowship at Stellenbosch University and UCT in the areas of citizenship education and religion education. Her current research interests are student teachers experiences of teacher education. In particular how this field may contribute understanding education systems and how individuals are authorised to legitimate literacy, knowledge and power.


Leigh-Ann Naidoo was raised in an anti-apartheid activist home, surrounded by radicals who taught her from a very young age the value of critique and radical praxis. She trained as a physical education and history teacher at the University of the Western Cape. Leigh-Ann worked at Johannesburg Workshop in Theory and Criticism at Wits University  and in 2013 she completed an MEd on the role of radical pedagogy in the South African Student Organisation and the Black Consciousness Movement of the 1970s. She joined the UCT School of Education in 2017. Her research interests are in education and social justice, social movements as sites of knowledge production, the roles of education in  resistance movements.


John Volmink completed a PhD in mathematics education at Cornell University, Ithaca NY in 1988. John served as Campus Vice-Principal at the then University of Natal, Durban and later Pro-Vice Chancellor for Partnerships at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. He has also been centrally involved in curriculum reform in post-apartheid South Africa and has been asked by all four Ministers of Education to play a leading role in the transformation of education in the new South Africa. He served for four years (2006 -2010) as the Chairperson of Umalusi Council, and is now serving a third term as Chair of Council. In 2016 he served as the Interim Vice-Chancellor of the Durban University of Technology and also Acting Vice-Chancellor at CPUT in 2017.


Filed under: Conference

PLENARY PANEL: MONDAY OCTOBER 22nd 2018 The curriculum knowledge imperative in South African education


The politics of knowledge in South African universities recently witnessed a radical discursive rupture. The call for decolonising education has been the cornerstone of the students’ recognition struggles at universities. Mobilising on the basis of their demand for free education, students across the university sector articulated the need for change in university knowledge and curricula in the light of what they described as their exposure to Eurocentric, racist and sexist knowledge at untransformed institutions. They argued that such a knowledge orientation is at the heart of their experience of alienation at the university. They suggested that only the complete overhaul of the curriculum on the basis of a decolonising education approach would provide them the type of educational access that addresses their emerging African- centred humanness. This panel will work with / against the call for decolonising education which has raised fundamental questions about reframing the purposes of education. Centring Africa-centric epistemology is at the heart of this educational reframing. The panel will consider languages of description to inform curriculum knowledge selection in educational contexts.  In other words, the debate will centre on the bases on which curricula in universities, schools and colleges are constituted.  The panel is based on the view that a decolonial politics of knowledge, despite some limited activity at a few universities to develop decolonial curricular approaches, operates at the level of symbols and politics. Instead, the debate should turn to considerations about the terms of the curriculum veracity of a decolonial approach. The panel discussion therefore shifts the focus to what counts as curriculum knowledge based on decoloniality, and the conceptual bases on which university departments, programmes and courses would  organise their curriculum knowledge assemblages based on such an approach.

PANEL CHAIR: Aslam Fataar

Aslam Fataar is currently a distinguished professor in the Faculty of Education at Stellenbosch University in Cape Town. He completed a PhD in 1999 and served as a Visiting Professor at Ohio University in the USA in 1999.  He completed a Fulbright Research Scholarship at Illinois University, USA  from August 2005 until June 2006. Aslam specialises in education policy the sociology of urban education. His first published book (2010) focuses on ‘Education Policy Development in the South African transition: 1990-1997’, His second book, published in 2015, is titled ’Engaging Schooling Subjectivities across Post-Apartheid Urban Spaces’. He has recently developed a focus on the sociology of curriculum. He has edited one book (2018), co-edited 6 books, and published more than 80 academic articles and chapters. He does active service work on two UNESCO commissions, one is the UNESCO Country Commission on educational development in Southern Africa, and the other is the Global City Network initiative based in Hamburg.  He held a B3 rating between 2009 and 2015, and currently rated as C1.


Lesley Le Grange is Distinguished Professor at Stellenbosch University. He is a former Vice-Dean (Research) of the Faculty of Education and teaches and researches in the fields of environmental education, research methodology, science education, curriculum studies, higher education studies and assessment. He has 205 publications to his credit and serves on editorial boards of eight peer-reviewed journals. He is a chairperson of the Accreditation Committee and member of the Higher Education Quality Committee (HEQC) of the Council on Higher Education in South Africa. He is Vice-President of the International Association for the Advancement of Curriculum Studies (IAACS) and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Biology (UK).


Simphiwe Sesanti is an Associate Professor at the University of South Africa (Unisa)’s Institute for African Renaissance Studies (IARS), and deputy editor of the International Journal of African Renaissance Studies (IJARS). His PhD (Journalism Studies) was obtained at Stellenbosch University where he taught for 7 years in the Department of Journalism. He has also taught in the Department of Journalism, Media and Philosophy at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. He has published in accredited journals on a variety of issues, including gender, African philosophy, journalism and religion. He is an author of two books, a co-editor of one book, and a contributor of chapters in a number of books. In 2018 he was awarded an NRF rating, C2.


Stephanie Matseleng Allais is the SARCHi Research Chair of Skills Development at the Centre for Researching Education and Labour (REAL) at Wits University. Her research is in the sociology and political economy of education, curriculum, and policy, focused on relationships between education and work. Prior to joining Wits University she was a fellow at the Centre for Educational Sociology at the University of Edinburgh. Before this she managed and conducted research into qualifications frameworks in 16 countries for the International Labour Organization.



Wayne Hugo is an associate professor at UKZN. He is   currently recovering from a bout of writing that resulted in four books by travelling around Africa, exploring disruptive education technologies, trying to get a handle on what to do about the massive demand for worthwhile education from our youth in a world gone awry.





Filed under: Conference

Journal of Education

Journal of education

It was agreed at the AGM in Cape Town that hard copies of the journal will no longer be printed (with the exception of the Conference Special Edition). Download pdf files of the latest Issues, 64 and 65.

All papers that were presented at the Cape Town Conference can be submitted to the Journal of Education Conference Special Edition which will be published next October. A Call for Papers will be circulated shortly.

Filed under: Journal of education

New Podcast Launched to Explore Issues on Higher Education

A new podcast, funded by the Academic Staff Association of Wits University, has been launched in order to create a space for debate and discussion on issues about higher education in South Africa, and beyond.

Titled, The Academic Citizen, the podcast explores a diversity of topics and opinions relating to higher education in South Africa, today and into the future. Each episode welcomes a guest for an in-depth discussion of a particular issue relevant to university life today, and also features commentary from students on the topic at hand.

The Academic Citizen (TAC) is an independent podcast series that is funded and sponsored by the Academic Staff Association of Wits University (ASAWU), the union representing academic staff at Wits. The podcast does not seek to be a platform to represent the views of individuals belonging to the union or to present the stance of the union as a collective. Instead, it aims to be a platform for learning more about a diversity of views, and gaining deeper insight into the challenges, and possible solutions, facing higher education in South Africa.

The current host of the podcast is Mehita Iqani, an Associate Professor in Media Studies at Wits, and researched, scheduled, edited and produced by Balungile Mbenyane.

The podcast is weekly, and goes live on Wednesdays before midnight. Ten episodes have been published so far, including:

  1. Higher Education During Apartheid, with Leigh-Ann Naidoo
  2. Gender Equity in Universities, with Maria Wanyane and Charlene Beukes
  3. Is Fee-Free Education Possible, with Dick Forslund
  4. Issues of University Governance, with Shireen Hassim

The Academic Citizen wishes to continue shedding light and perspectives of all stakeholders within higher education, in order to improve the understanding of issues that relate to education and development in South Africa.

The podcast is available on numerous platforms: iTunes, the Podcast app for iOS and the Pocket Casts app for Android. It can also be accessed on Soundcloud and on

Feedback and suggestions for future shows are welcomed at moc.liamgnull@neziticcimedacaeht. For more about ASAWU visit

Filed under: News about education

Education Policy Analysis Archives: Call for Papers

Special Topic: Navigating the Contested Terrain of Teacher Education Policy and Practice

Guest-edited by Olena Aydarova and David Berliner, Arizona State University

Education Policy Analysis Archives (EPAA/AAPE ) announces a call for papers for a special issue exploring the contested terrain of teacher education policy and practice. In the policy climate where various actors claim to have the solutions for the enduring challenges of the profession, certain voices and perspectives get left out of the debates and policy deliberations. To address these silences and omissions, this special issue brings together scholars attending to voices, perspectives, or issues that are sidelined in the policy debates dominated by market logic, neoliberal ideologies, and accountability hype in teacher education policies and practices in the US and abroad. Drawing on diverse theoretical, methodological, and conceptual tools, contributors to this special issue are invited to consider the controversies of the current policy debates, deficiencies in evidentiary bases of policy proposals and practice changes, the missing links between teacher education reforms and the struggle to preserve democratic schooling, as well as international connections between domestic reforms and global ideological flows. The special issue will be of interest to educational policy scholars, teacher educators, as well as educational researchers in general. Research papers using interdisciplinary or mixed media (images/audio/video clips) formats are highly encouraged.

About the Journal: Celebrating its 24th year, EPAA/AAPE is a peer-reviewed, open-access, international, multilingual, and multidisciplinary journal designed for researchers, practitioners, policy makers, and development analysts concerned with education policies. EPAA/AAPE accepts unpublished original manuscripts in English, Spanish and Portuguese without restriction as to conceptual and methodological perspectives, time or place.

Submission Information:Interested contributors are invited to submit 500-word abstracts aligned with the special issue themes for review by guest editors by September 1, 2016. All manuscripts should be submitted electronically through the EPAA website and follow the journal’s submission guidelines: We will not consider manuscripts submitted for publication or published elsewhere.


Abstract Submission Deadline: September 1, 2016

Final Manuscripts Deadline: November 1, 2016

Publication Date: October 30, 2017

Early submissions are encouraged.

Guest Co-Editors: Olena Aydarova (Arizona State University) ude.usanull@avoradya.anelo and David Berliner (Arizona State University) ude.usanull@renilreb


Filed under: Publications