Introducing the Human Sciences Research Council

The HSRC is the national social science council of South Africa. Its core business is to conduct large-scale, policy-relevant, social-scientific projects for public-sector users, non-governmental organisations and international development agencies. According to their website, the HSRC wishes to serve as a knowledge hub to bridge the gap between research, policy and action; thus increasing the impact of research. The organisation is committed to making a difference in the quality of life of ordinary people and is often commissioned to undertake large-scale research on behalf of government departments at national, regional and local levels. The HSRC also serves the research needs of parastatal organizations and the private sector, as well as local and international development agencies to track service delivery, evaluate performance and measure the efficacy of interventions.

They have 9 specific research areas, but the two that will interest the Faculty the most, are the Centres for Education Quality Improvement and Education, Science and Skills Development. The primary purpose of the Centre for Education Quality is to support government and other key role-players (teachers, parents, learners, NGOs, donors) enhance decision-making processes for implementing relevant and effective strategies to improve education quality at all levels of the system. The Education, Science and Skills Development (ESSD) programme conducts research in the areas of education, skills development and innovation systems.

The research reports are distributed through the HSRC Press. It is an open access publisher committed to the dissemination of research based publications, in print and electronic form. Recent examples include “Opportunities and Challenges for Teacher Education Curriculum in South Africa” and “Beginner Teachers in South Africa : School Readiness, Knowledge and Skills”. Both are available as free downloads. Further publications on education can be found here. Lecturers of our Faculty are invited to browse through the titles and contact Ester Venter if you want us to order a specific title.

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