Geography : the state of the discipline in South Africa (2000 - 2001)

Fairhurst, U.J. and Davies, R.J. and Fox, R.C. and Goldschagg, P. and Ramutsindela, M. and Bob, U. and Khosa, M.M. (2003) Geography : the state of the discipline in South Africa (2000 - 2001). South African Geographical Journal, 85 (2). pp. 81-89. ISSN 0373-6245




The research team presents the findings of a comprehensive investigation into the status and role of Geography as an academic discipline in South Africa. The paper begins by placing the discipline in historical and epistemological context. Extensive and intensive interviews were conducted with geographers at all South African universities and, on a smaller scale, in the workplace. Information was also gleaned from an array of documents. Comments on the characteristics of university departments, general school education, the geography research environment the geographer in the workplace are given. Emerging trends, many of which relate to recent socio-political change, show that contemporary emphasis is on applied geography, specific fields of specialisation, the accommodation of Environmental Science and Environmental Management, skills training and on curriculum development with a marked vocational orientation. As geographers continue addressing national and international environmental and social issues in their professional endeavours, they are alerted to critical concerns voiced with conviction by practising geographers. In the final analysis a positive conclusion is reached and the academic merit and status of the discipline is confirmed.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:academic performance; geographical research; higher education; performance assessment; Africa; South Africa; Southern Africa; Sub-Saharan Africa
Subjects:Y Unknown > Subjects to be assigned
Divisions:Faculty > Faculty of Science > Geography
ID Code:360
Deposited On:03 Oct 2006
Last Modified:06 Jan 2012 16:18
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