Department of Afrikaans
As the youngest Germanic language in the world, Afrikaans is studied at universities in the Netherlands, Belgium, Namibia, Poland, Russia and the United States of America. Afrikaans is the third most widely spoken South African language and is also recognised as an African language by the Department of Higher Education and Training. Afrikaans is one of the three official languages recognised at the University of Fort Hare.
The Department of Afrikaans in East London has shown significant growth as a discipline of choice in the predominantly English and isiXhosa cultural surroundings of East London, and in doing so, has established itself as an academic Department of excellence. The research niche area of Ecopoetics has owned recognition both nationally and internationally.
The Department offers a three year programme with the possibility to continue onto Honours, Masters and Doctoral studies. The content of the academic programmes include a variety of linguistic and literary aspects, taking the student on a journey from the introductory levels to intensive and comprehensive knowledge of the field, with continued and accelerated exposure to aspects of the Afrikaans language and literature within a multi-cultural context. The Department is also involved in the teaching of various Afrikaans language and methodology modules to students enrolled in the Education Faculty.
As an indispensable link in the education career of non-mother tongue students, preparing them for the multi-cultural society in which they will have to operate, the Department also offers Afrikaans Prakties as well as various short courses which has played a huge role in honing communicational and reading skills of many students from other disciplines.
Community engagement is very much part of the profile of the Department and the Department is involved in various ongoing community projects.