INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE SYSTEMS

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					                                     IKS
    INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE SYSTEMS
                            CAREER OPPORTUNITIES


STUDYING INDIGENOUS KNOWLEDGE SYSTEMS

In 2004 Cabinet adopted a policy to recognise, protect, promote and develop South Africa’s
rich heritage of indigenous knowledge.

The policy recognises the transdisciplinary nature of indigenous knowledge systems (IKS),
and many higher education institutions are beginning to realign their course contents to
include IKS. Consequently, there are a great many opportunities for young people wishing
to pursue careers in IKS. There are possibilities in both the public and the private sectors, in
fields such as health, culture, music, tourism, environmental conservation, local government,
museum science, education, mass media, conservation, community development, agriculture
and rural development.

Bachelor of Indigenous Knowledge Systems
In 2007 the Department of Science and Technology initiated the development of an indigenous
knowledge systems degree, the Bachelor of Indigenous Knowledge Systems (BIKS). The
qualification was a joint initiative between the Department of Science and Technology and the
IKS Centre of Excellence, which comprises North West University, the University of Limpopo
and the University of Venda.

The four-year degree programme is recognised by the South African Qualifications
Authority and covers a range of streams related to science, technology and innovation. It
is a multidisciplinary qualification, based on a holistic approach to understanding IKS, and
it lays a solid academic and practical foundation. Graduates will be able to apply their
knowledge in a range of contexts, including health sciences, traditional leadership, tourism,
communication, agriculture, nature conservation, arts and culture, education, law, human
and social sciences, and construction. Students who graduate with a BIKS will be able to
go on to do a master’s degree (MIKS) and then a doctorate (DIKS).

The qualification allows participants to specialise in one or more of the following areas:

•     Indigenous Environmental and Socio-ecological Studies
•     Indigenous Biodiversity and Bioprospecting
•     African Science, Technology and Innovation Systems
•     Indigenous Knowledge Development and Management Systems
•     Indigenous African Systems
•     Indigenous Health
•     Indigenous Law




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