Original Research: Indigenous knowledge systems

Exploring the relationship between science and indigenous knowledge: Possibilities for integration in South African Life Sciences classrooms

Lesley le Grange
Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie | Vol 34, No 1 | a1338 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/satnt.v34i1.1338 | © 2015 Lesley le Grange | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 30 May 2015 | Published: 14 September 2015

About the author(s)

Lesley le Grange, Department of Curriculum Studies, Stellenbosch University, South Africa

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The article is a theoretical exploration of the relationship between science and indigenous knowledge, as well as the implications for integrating the two in Life Sciences classrooms in schools. The theoretical discussion draws on insights from the sociology of scientific knowledge and argues that science should not only be viewed as representation but also as performance. Such a view, it is argued, serves as the basis for integrating indigenous knowledge into the Life Sciences. Practical suggestions are made as to how indigenous knowledge could be infused into Life Sciences classrooms and how teachers can scaffold learners through different types or stages of what Jegede calls, ‘collateral learning’.


Life Sciences, school science, indigenous knowledge, collateral learning, sociology of science


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