On 28 July the Faculty of Human Sciences marked a decade of diverse research when the annual research seminar was held at Vaal University of Technology Southern Gauteng Science and Technology Park.
This year’s Human Sciences Faculty Seminar was held under the theme Decade of Discourse: celebrating diverse research in human sciences. Vast knowledge and thought-provoking issues were presented and debated from various disciplines.
Dr William Mpofu, a researcher at the Wits Centre for Diversity Studies, was the keynote speaker and opened with a presentation titled: “The Decolonial Turn: From the University to Pluriversity”. He highlighted a few observations from his research which included those from the Fees Must Fall campaign – racism, language and culture and the naming of universities. He emphasised that cultural diversity should be embraced in our daily lives as well as at universities.
“Enactment change in universities will allow future universities to be multilingual and shun the ‘political nonsense’ that universities cannot be multilingual,” Dr Mpofu said.
Research was presented in the disciplines of Communication, Education, Visual Arts and Design, Legal Sciences, Hospitality, Tourism and Public Relations.
Professor Allan Munro, from Visual Arts and Design, presented his research: “Doing research to decolonise research: To start at the very beginning”. This was among the greatest topics of discussion. Prof Connie Moloi from the department of Education presented on reflective critique of our teaching and learning. He encouraged reflective learning and reflecting on students’ experience about teaching and assumptions. Ms Louisa Japhta form the department of Legal Sciences had researched the clarity of special leave versus suspension, under Legal Sciences.
Overall it was felt that the seminar broadened the minds of the attendees with ample topics that are relevant as well as important. Decolonisation became the key word amongst the delegates and general consensus was that African problems are unique and cannot be resolved using Western models.
Written by Thabiso Sechele