Outcomes-based education and non-English mother tongue speakers from disadvantaged environments: a double-edged handicap to acquiring information literacy

13 Oct 2013

Information literacy is the ability to access and critically engage with information, and to communicate new understandings which lead to knowledge and wisdom. Information literacy skills are incorporated in our outcomes-based educations critical, cross-curricular outcomes. Our new learner-centred, resource- based curriculum places a premium on acquiring information literacy skills. Access to a resource rich learning environment favours the development of information literacy and the success of outcomes-based education. Most schools in South Africa lack basic learning resources and in African languages there exists the greatest dearth. Using an informal study of 65 historically disadvantaged schools in Cape Town, the author explores issues of language and cognition, learning resources in the mother tongue, and new teaching methodologies, in particular resource-based learning's learner-centred approach.