n South African Journal of Higher Education - The influence of ecosystemic factors on black student teachers' perceptions and experience of early childhood education

Volume 28, Issue 2
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



The low enrolment and pass rate of black students motivated this study to explore how the ecosystemic factors influenced black student teachers' perceptions and experiences of early childhood education (ECE) at a former white university. The study aimed to understand black student teachers' perceptions and experiences of ECE; to provide recommendations to strengthen the ECE programme in order to meet the needs of the black students it serves; and finally to gain insight in order to address the need to recruit and retain black students. Qualitative research methods, such as 'photo voice' (Olivier, Wood and De Lange 2009), narratives and semi-structured interviews were conducted and examined through the theoretical lens of Bronfenbrenner's ecological systems theory. Initial analysis of the data revealed several categories, such as perceptions of career, status and programme; financial implications; support; and current experiences. Thereafter, further interpretation of the data explicated the following themes: 'history', 'it's all about money', 'community', 'cultural relevance' and 'me, myself and others'.

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