Welcome to IACESA

IACESA has been active for 21 years and this achievement was celebrated at the IACESA Conference that took place from 19 to 21 February 2015 at the Clock Tower Conference Centre (V&A Waterfront) in Cape Town.  The conference programme included numerous key note presenters, more than 30 presenters and was attended by over 150 delegates. A few IACESA founder members were present too and received honorary IACESA membership.

The next IACESA conference will take place in 2017.  Regular IACESA Cog Ed Seminars will be conducted from the second term of 2015 and other professional development opportunities organized by IACESA, or related organizations and institutions, will be placed on the calendar or can be viewed under conferences.  Anyone interested in the promotion and development of cognitive education in Southern Africa can belong to IACESA or attend the activities organized by IACESA.

What makes IACESA special and unique amidst the plethora of interest groups, organisations and associations that aim to nurture thinking?  Given the reality that there are many ways offered by special interest groups and private organisations that have a common interest in advancing cognitive potential, it seems reasonable to assume that confusion might exist as to which is the best way.  Therefore, the IACESA board has constructed a statement that is aligned to the vision and mission of the organisation that encapsulates IACESA’s intent regarding the unique way in which IACESA envisages successful cognitive education.

IACESA Statement:

IACESA is the first and leading non-profit, multi-professional association in South Africa that promotes the purposeful development of effective thinking as a life skill and academic skill. To achieve its goal (the intentional enhancement of thinking skills) and maintain its standards IACESA collaborates with the Cognitive Education Research Group (Optentia Research Focus Area), NWU, Vaal Triangle Campus, and with other higher education based research initiatives.

The Association intends to:

  • Inspire lifelong learning, advance knowledge, and strengthen the quality of teaching, learning and assessment in all contexts, by providing access to sound and accredited training in Cognitive Education via the Short Learning Programme (NQF Level 6) and in other ways.
  • Advance the widespread provision and publication of sound research-based information about improving the quality of thinking during teaching, learning and assessment in formal, informal and non-formal contexts to achieve immediate and lasting changes in individuals.
  • Motivate and empower individuals to commit to ongoing improvement regarding the explicit nurturing of thinking during teaching, learning and assessment, in which the principles of mediated learning are foundational.
  • Take a firm stand about promoting a unique, practical, whole school, multi-level (formal, informal, non-formal contexts), and multi-professional approach (parents, teachers, therapists, psychologists, practitioners, labour market) to teaching and assessing for thinking that takes into account the South African context.
  • Create opportunities for consultation, continuing professional development and networking to advance and support the effective teaching and assessment of thinking.
  • Promote the widespread recognition of breakthroughs in our understanding of how to teach thinking explicitly.
  • Lobby and work in partnership with a variety of stakeholders such as the DoE, and Umalusi to create a more informed public – one challenged and invigorated by a deeper understanding and appreciation of cognitive education.
  • Grow and expand the Association to empower younger members/future leaders who will continue to promote the ideals of cognitive education in a dynamic and pro-active way.
  • Take a caring stance towards acknowledging and maintaining the cognitive needs of the elderly.



 “Cognitive education teaches students how to become better at thinking and learning…”

(Green, 2014)