Multilingual Education for Africa: Concepts and Practices


Russel H Kaschula (ed)
Rhodes University
H Ekkehard Wolff (ed)
Rhodes University


Dedicated to the memory of Neville Alexander, the book opens with a tribute to this South African who was directly engaged in advocacy around issues of language, multilingualism and literacy.

The common thread in this book is the exploration of innovative pedagogies in language teaching and language use in education. The greatest danger facing educators is one of complacency. Whether set in Zimbabwe, Ethiopia, South Africa or elsewhere in Africa, all the chapters in this book emphasise the imperative for educators to constantly revise curricula and teaching methods in order to find the most appropriate ways of teaching and using language in multilingual settings. The chapters in this book place the mother tongue at the centre of learning, while developing the use of exoglossic languages such as English. The book will be of interest to educators at all levels of the education system.

Comprising of 17 chapters, the book is divided into three parts, which addresses the multilingual context of education in Africa, the teaching of additional language in schools, and additional language tuition in higher education.

Everyone interested in comparative education models, language teaching, and language use in multilingual contexts of all cycles of education, will find this book useful.

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Dedication: A tribute to Neville Alexander

Part 1: The Multilingual Context of Education in Africa

Chapter 1: Introduction – The multilingual context of education in Africa

Chapter 2: Teaching isiZulu as an additional language 

Chapter 3: Developing reading literacy in an L2 learning environment

Chapter 4: Teaching mathematics to isiXhosa-speaking students through Afrikaans

Chapter 5: IsiNdebele and minority languages in education in Zimbabwe

Chapter 6: The teaching and learning of African languages at South African universities

Part 2: Teaching Additional Language in School

Chapter 7: Children’s dictionaries

Chapter 8: Improving educational practice

Chapter 9: The language of instruction at early childhood development level

Chapter 10: The impact of pupils’ background and school context

Part 3: Using Additional Language in Higher Education

Chapter 11: Piloting Oromo-English bilingual teaching at tertiary level

Chapter 12: Additional English at tertiary level

Chapter 13: A multilingual approach to teaching South African History

Chapter 14: IsiZulu at the University of KwaZulu-Natal

Chapter 15: Afrikaans communication skills for Mauritian medical students

Chapter 16: Additional language in secondary and tertiary education

Chapter 17: Designing a vocational English curriculum




Author Biographies

Russel H Kaschula, Rhodes University

Prof Russell H. Kaschula is the NRF SARChI Chair:  Intellectualisation of African Languages, Multilingualism and Education, School of Languages & Literatures (African Language Studies Section), Rhodes University.

H Ekkehard Wolff, Rhodes University

Prof  H. Ekkehard Wolff, Universität Leipzig, is Visiting Professor to  the NRF SARChI Chair: Intellectualisation of African Languages, Multilingualism and Education, School of Languages & Literatures (African Language Studies Section), Rhodes University.

Cover for Multilingual Education for Africa: Concepts and Practices
January 15, 2017