The mission of the Optentia Research Unit is to develop and organise knowledge for the optimal expression of individual, social and institutional potential, with a specific interest in the African context. The research unit utilises the inputs from multiple disciplines: Economics, Educational Sciences, Employment Relations, Human Resource Management, Information Technology, Philosophy, Psychology (Work and Organisational Psychology, Educational Psychology, Counselling Psychology, and Clinical Psychology), Risk Management, Social Anthropology, Social Work, and Sociology. We study the optimisation of the potential of people and institutions by focusing on pathways from precarity to capability and optimal functioning. Optentia's research is organised into six programmes

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A festival of diverse qualitative research perspectives - 03 to 06 September 2024

The research festival aims to promote qualitative research expertise by showcasing diverse perspectives, methods, tools, techniques, and best practices that are associated with qualitative-based research. This may be of interest to students, researchers, practitioners, community partners and members from industry who are interested in qualitative research.
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International Spring Week - Faculty of Humanities - 16 to 20 September 2024

Title: Humanities Horizons: Navigating Modernity and Innovation. The aim of the international week is to bring together higher degree students, study leaders and researchers from different study fields in the humanities to learn and converse about the future of Humanities while navigating modernity and innovation. This week will provide opportunities to meet with renowned and expert researchers, attend workshops/seminars, but also presenting your own current and completed research.
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17th International Federation on Ageing Conference - 09 to 12 September 2025

Join us for an insightful and impactful event dedicated to exploring the diverse dimensions of ageing and its implications on society. As the world’s population continues to age, it’s imperative that we come together to address the challenges and opportunities associated with this demographic shift. Our conference features thought-provoking keynote addresses, inspiring symposiums, skill-building workshops, interactive oral and poster sessions and most importantly the voices of older people from around the globe. Go to the following link for mor
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Recent news

Empowering Growth: Innovations in Academic Capability Development

Academic mentorship is important for academics in higher education institutions in South Africa, just as it is globally. Mentorship programmes provide various benefits including professional development, guidance on navigating the...Read article

Optentia symposium emphasises the importance of balancing technological progress with ethical considerations

The Optentia research unit of the North-West University (NWU) recently ...Read article

New intake for the academic mentor and mentee programs at the NWU

Optentia and the Faculty of Humanities recently visited the Mahikeng, Potchefstroom and Vanderbijlpark Campuses of the North-West University to initiate the second intake of participants for the Short Course for Academic Mentors a...Read article

Discovery Delight: Socialising the Scientific Way

Recently, the NWU Optentia hosted one of its bi-annual Research Community Days at the Vanderbijlpark campus, themed "Discovery Delight: Socialising the Scientific Way."

This event was a vibrant celebration aim...Read article

Newsletter, March 2024

Upcoming events



NWU-HREC Meeting
Agenda Closes: 30 April 2024