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Leila Kajee

Professor: Language and Literacy
Name: Leila Kajee
Location: B Ring 407 Auckland Park Kingsway Campus
DECS Staff, Department of Education and Curriculum Studies, Faculty of Education, NRF Rated Researchers  Staff Members

Contact Details:
Tel: 011 559 3296


About Prof Leila Kajee

Leila Kajee

Leila holds a PhD in Education, specializing in Language in Education. Her research interests span social justice and transformation through language, literacies, and identities.  She has taught a range of programmes at undergraduate and postgraduate levels, including Applied English, Educational Linguistics, Literacies, Research Design, Online learning and Digital Literacy. Leila is full professor in the Department of Education & Curriculum Studies. She works predominantly with pre- and in-service teachers, and participates in and leads several funded projects in her research area.


Recent projects:

U21 teacher education and migration

Education for social change: social justice, peace and social cohesion in Brazil and South Africa (NRF)

Unheard voices: Experiences of international students in the academy

Multimodality and multiliteracies: Digital literacy practices in English classrooms

In-and out-of-school literacy practices

Home and school literacies among immigrant children living in South Africa

Promoting girls’ education in Africa: Girls’ voices, girls’ identities


Recent Publications:


Kajee, L. (In press) Between two worlds: immigrant literacy practices. Codesria.

Kajee, L. (2008) Constructing identities in online communities of practice: a case study of online learning. Peter Lang: Oxford, UK.


Book Chapters:

Kajee, L (in press). “Where hope flourishes: Teaching refugee children in troubling times. Teaching the Displaced: What Every Educator Should Know.  Springer.

Kajee, L. (In press) “Student and academic voices on Covid-19: Lessons learnt in South Africa” Brown, B. (Ed.) Emerging approaches to teaching and learning in a post-Covid-19 higher education world. Cambridge.

Kajee, L. (2020) A humanizing pedagogy: Being a conscious presence in the world. In Carmo, M (Ed). Education applications and developments V. Inscience Press

Kajee, L. (2020) Straddling Two Worlds:  Immigrant Adolescents’ Construction of Identities. In Cardozo-Gabisso, L and Vazques Dominguez, M (Eds). Advancing language equity practices with immigrant communities: Learning in and out of schools. IGI Global.

Kajee, L. (2018).  Pain, discomfort and safe spaces: Pre-service teachers negotiating and engaging with social justice. In Reichmann, C (ed) (Im)possible horizons in the supervised internship: language teacher development and literacy practices. Pontes Editora, in Campinas, São Paulo ISBN: 9788 57113 965-7

Kajee, L. (2017) Internationacionalizacao do ensino superior: implicacoes do ingles como lingua franca na Africa do Sul (Internationalisation of higher education: Implications of English as lingua franca in South Africa) In de Moura Rogerio Adolfo; de Almedida Organizadores, Andre Albino. Internacionalizacao do Ensino Superior: Desafios e Perspectivas.  Editora CRV: Brazil.

Accredited Articles:

Kajee, L. (2021) Teacher narratives and understandings of (de) humanising pedagogy. South African Journal of Higher Education.vol 35, no.6

Limbada, Z and Kajee, L. (2021). Teaching for justice: Recognising learner disadvantage and redressing inequalities in education.  European Journal of Economics, Law and Social Sciences. Vol. 5 No. 2.

Kajee, L. (2019) “Entangled discourses: pre-service teachers engage with notions of justice and parity” English Academy Review vol 36(1: 20-31).  DOI  10.1080/10131752.2019.157940

Sibanda, R. and Kajee, L. (2019) “Home as primary space: Exploring out-of-school literacy practices in early childhood education in a township in South Africa”. South African Journal of Early Childhood Education  vol 9(1), 1-10.

Kajee L. (2018). Teacher education students engaging with digital identity narratives. South African Journal of Education, 38(2): Art. # 1501, 9 pages.

Kajee, L.& Ngoh, D. (2018) Mapping the literate lives of two Cameroonian families living in Johannesburg:  implications for language and literacy education. Per Linguam 34(1), pp. 1-16

Kajee, L. (2018) “The road is never straight”: emerging teachers negotiating language and identity” South African Journal of Higher Education. Volume 2 (5), pp. 201–213. ISSN 1011-3487

Kajee, L. (2015) “The road is never straight”: emerging teachers negotiating language and identity” South African Journal of Higher Education. Volume 2 (5), pp. 201–213. ISSN 1011-3487

Reviewed conference proceedings:

Salejee Patel, Z. and Kajee, L. (2021). Contemplating translanguaging as linguistic social justice pedagogy. Atiner Conference. International Conference on Education, Teaching, Learning and Assessment (Athens).

Limbada, Z and Kajee, L. (2021). Teacher narratives of social (in)justice: Early experiences shaping pedagogy. International Conference on Multidisciplinary Research (Mauritius).

Kajee, L. (2020a). Refugee youth: No Human being is illegal. Edulearn 2020 Proceedings.

Kajee, L. (2020b) Negotiating immigrant student challenges through culturally sustaining pedagogy. Edulearn 2020 Proceedings

Kajee, L. (2019a). A dehumanizing pedagogy: Let the teachers speak. In Carmo, M. (Ed.) Education and New Developments END 2019. InScience Press. ISBN: 978-989-54312-6-7

Kajee, L. (2019b). Humanising pedagogies: Giving voice to migrant learners. Proceedings of the International Conference on Research in Education and Social Sciences. ISBN: 258- 1730

Kajee, L. (2018a). You do not throw away history, you fight: Conversations about justice. Proceedings of the 9th International Conference on Interdisciplinary Social Science Studies: Cambridge Conference Series.

Kajee, L. (2018b). Notions of justice: South African teachers engage. ICISSS, Cambridge, London

Kajee, L. (2017.) “Digital identity narratives: The stories within”. New Directions in Humanities Journal

Kajee, L. (2016) “Engaging adolescents: Immigrant digital literacies and diasporic identities” Edulearn 2016 Proceedings

Kajee, L. (2016). “Digital literacy: a critical framework for digital literacy practices in classrooms” Edulearn 2016 proceedings

Kajee, L. (2015) “Thumb tribes: Children reading digitally. Edulearn Proceedings.

Kajee, L. (2015) Digital materials for the English classroom. Edulearn Proceedings