South Africa: Education and Social Change (Summer)

Experience the challenges and successes of educational transformation in South Africa through theory, the arts, field study, and practice.

High school in Wentworth

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After more than a decade of living under a democracy, South Africans continue to struggle with the legacy of apartheid. From the Soweto uprisings to contemporary campus life, educational institutions in South Africa have long been sites of social struggle, activism, and political organization, as well as centers of learning and formal education.

Education in South Africa, particularly primary and secondary education, has undergone a significant change in the last year, since the Education Ministry relaxed the requirements of the controversial Outcomes-Based Education (OBE) that has dominated policy discussions since 1995.

This program examines the role of education in South Africa in the context of the country’s historical circumstances, contemporary public policy, and social and economic development.

Students typically spend time at primary and secondary schools, as well as adult educational centers in urban and rural KwaZulu-Natal. The Zululand rural homestay period includes a one-week practicum and observation of nearby educational institutions.

Among the many exciting cultural events students experience during the program is the Grahamstown National Arts Festival, where social struggle, activists, and protest theater are likely to feature prominently.


Costs Dates



Credits: 8

Duration: 6 weeks

Program Base: Durban

Prerequisites: None

South Africa

View Student Evaluations for this program:

About the Evaluations (PDF)

Summer 2013 Evaluations (PDF)
Summer 2012 Evaluations (PDF)
Summer 2011 Evaluations (PDF)


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