n South African Journal of Higher Education - Education for self reliance - South Africa's alternative for addressing skills shortage and job creation : a literature review

Volume 24, Issue 5
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



South Africa's democratic state has been clouded by various social and economic ills like joblessness, skills shortage, poverty and crime. These are a result of various complex issues which include the apartheid legacy, misdirected education system and poor planning for long term national priorities. This article looks at the lost opportunities to which education could have contributed to change this country's misfortunes. It further advocates that Education for Self Reliance as espoused by Julius Nyerere is a viable alternative for addressing the skills shortage and sustainable job creation in South Africa. It tows Nyerere's line of argument about an education system which disservices the learners by preparing them for something which most will never achieve.

The article further unpacks the Education for Self Reliance concept and customizes it for the South African context. It argues that, regardless of the exit stage of the respective learners, they should be equipped with appropriate skills that would enable them to be self reliant, positively contribute to the country's economy and counter the dependency syndrome.

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