News & events


Indigenous Research Methodologies

29 March 2011
12:15 - 14:00

Date :

29 March 2011

Time :

12:15 – 14:00

Presenter :

Professor Bagele Chilisa, Professor of Education at the University of Botswana

Following the increasing emphasis in the classroom and in the field to sensitise researchers and students to diverse epistemologies, methods, and methodologies – especially those of women, minority groups, former colonised societies, indigenous people, historically oppressed communities, and people with disabilities, author Bagele Chilisa has written the first research methods textbook that situates research in a larger, historical, cultural, and global context with case studies from around the globe to make very visible the specific methodologies that are commensurate with the transformative paradigm of research and the historical and cultural traditions of indigenous peoples.  


Chapters cover the history of research methods, colonial epistemologies, research within postcolonial societies, relational epistemologies, emergent and indigenous methodologies, Afrocentric research, feminist research, language frameworks, interviewing, and building partnerships between researchers and the researched. The book comes replete with traditional textbook features such as key points, exercises, and suggested readings, which makes it ideally suited for graduate courses in research methods, especially in education, health, women’s studies, cultural studies, sociology, and related social sciences.

These are methods inclusive of other ways of knowing, perceiving reality and value systems and methods that empower communities to produce knowledge that they can own and use to improve their standards of living. She is first author to two books in this area: 1) Educational research: Towards sustainable development, and 2) Research methods for adult educators in Africa. She is single author of a new book: Indigenous research methodologies which international reviewers describe as the first research methods textbook that situates research in a larger, historical, cultural, and global context. Selected journal articles include 1) Educational research within postcolonial Africa: A critique of HIV/AIDS research in Botswana (International Journal of Qualitative Studies; 2) Ressisting dominnat discourses: Implications of indiegnous african feminist theory and methods for gender and education research (Gender and  Education Journal); 3) Mbizi: Empowerment and HIV/AIDS prevention for adolescents girls in Botswana (The Journal of Specialists in Group Work). Chapters in books include: 1) Indigenous  Researchers: Contrasting Western and Indigenous Perspectives’, In D. Mertens and P. Ginsberg, Handbook for Social Research Ethics; 2) Indigenous Knowledge, HIV and AIDS Education and Research: Implications for Health Educators, In E.  Taylor and P.  Cranton, The hanbook of   transformative learning; 3) ‘Sex’ Education: Subjugated voices and adolescent voices in C. Skelton, B. Francis & L.  Smulyan, Gender and Education. 

Bagele Chilisa is  the first  Motswana woman Professor  of Education at the University of Botswana where she teaches Research Methods and Evaluation courses to graduate and undergraduate students. One of her main areas of research is on research methodologies that are relevant, context specific and appropriate in African contexts, culturally complex communities and methodologies that make visible voices of those who continue to suffer oppression and discrimination be it because of their sex, race/ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation or social class. She has received numerous grants to carry out evaluation research on HIV/AIDS, gender, education, sexuality and assessment. She was the first scholar at the University of Botswana to win a large NIH research grant.  

The presentation from the seminar is now available

Indigenous Research Methodologies Flyer  


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