WVOS 221 Assignment 1 Due date: 14 September 2018
Lecturer: M. Setlogelo
A conception of the world or a philosophy of life is known as a worldview. Indigenous
Knowledge Systems defined as understandings, knowledge, skills and philosophies that are
developed by the societies. This is local knowledge that helps with decision making in day to
day lives, and it also serves as a platform for fundamental aspects that the people have in
their daily lives. It is also known as the following; community knowledge, environmental
knowledge and traditional knowledge. In the world of Indigenous knowledge, experienced
knowledge is not very assured in science. This knowledge is very essential for cultures and
is very complex because it surrounds language, social interactions, rituals and also
spirituality. In local communities the unique ways provide the characteristics on how local
development is appropriate. Western science worldview is known as the system that relies
on laws and uses scientific methods to give predictions and tests on the extraordinary things
in the world around us.
In this essay I will be discussing indigenous knowledge systems and Western science
knowledge in education, with examples contributing to the two different world views with in
2.1 Discussion of theory
Some educators may face challenges in teaching because of certain cultures and traditions.
Indigenous communities help their children to improve in their language and traditions by
teaching them. In Education the curriculum development will always be the centre point, both
viewpoints are being looked at, teaching and learning are being innovated to place the focus
on “authentic” learning. Learners must be exposed to real life situations in their learning
process. Opportunities in the curriculum for development will be increased by changing the
modes of knowledge. Children must grow and adapt to changes, therefore, the curriculum
must be changed in a way that broadens the knowledge systems, they must look for new
ways to engage the different worldviews and get new knowledge and solutions for problems.
In the local area Indigenous knowledge can play a very important role, in most societies the
people has developed very enormous volumes of this knowledge over the years just by
directly interacting in that community. Knowledge about water, the climate, and wildlife and
how to use minerals, this is an easy made knowledge system that can be used in education.
In Western science education is all about sharing science with individuals and not about
tradition, subjects in education concerned with Western science are physical, life, space and
human science and technology plays a big role in their education system.
Examples on how the two differ from one another are the following; Indigenous knowledge ”
Nature is real and partly observable and testable” believes the land we live on is sacred,
were the Western science ” Nature is real, observable and testable” believes it is given to
people to use for development and its beneficiary for humans. Looking into both views land
is provided for us to live on and make use of the resources to be able to make a living, but it
is also very special because it’s limited and cannot be developed by humans again. Another
example according to L. Bear (2006) “indigenous” people believe time is non-linear and is
cyclical in nature ” Time is real and continuous “, were the Westerns believe time is made
out of months, years, and days and is future orientated “Time is an irreversible series of
duration” . Both viewpoints are true time is cyclical in nature but it also consists out of
months, days and years.
From a critical viewpoint, Indigenous knowledge is a silent factor in the curriculum and plays
the role of how the learners think and the teachers teach the learners. Teachers must be
very impartial and keep all the cultural factors and viewpoint from the community the learner
is from in mind. Each child will be brought up differently in a different society that has a world
view that will differ from one another. The curriculum must be open and flexible to
accommodate Indigenous and Western science viewpoints.
In the world we get “Indigenous” and “non-indigenous” people, and you as an educator must
understand and respect all the differences in the worldviews. Indigenous knowledge should
not be forced on to the learners. There is not always a right or wrong because learners see
the world from a perspective they are brought up with and that should be respected.
Hoberg, S.M., 2004. School principalship and the value of African indigenous knowledge
(AIK): Ships passing in the night?: perspectives on higher education, Department of
Educational Studies, South African Journal of Higher Education, 18 (3), pp.40-55.
Mapesela, M.L.E., 2004. The Basotho indigenous knowledge (IK): Do we understand it well
enough to employ it as a tool in higher education teaching?,The practice of higher
education. South African Journal of Higher Education, 18 (3), pp.316-326.
Tisani, N., 2004. African indegenous knowledge systems (AIKSs): Another challenge for
curriculum development in higher education?: Department of Science and Technology Cape
Technikon : Teaching and Learning Centre, 18(3), pp.174-184.