Department of African Languages

Prof IM Kosch (Sesotho sa Leboa)

College of Human Sciences
School of Arts
Department: African Languages
Tel: 012 429 8232
Fax: 012 429 8288


  • BA Degree (University of Pretoria)
  • BA Honours Degree in African Languages (Unisa)
  • MA Degree in African Languages (Unisa)
  • D.Litt et Phil Degree in African Languages (Unisa)  


Fields of academic interests

Research interests

  • Morphology
  • Orthography
  • Lexicology 

Field of Specialisation

  • Northern Sotho linguistics 


2006:    Topics in morphology in the African language context. Pretoria: University of South Africa.


1993:    A historical perspective on Northern Sotho linguistics.  Via Afrika Monograph Series 5.  Pretoria:  Via Afrika.
1995:    Northern Sotho.  Languages of the World/Materials No 30.  München, Newcastle:  Lincom Europa (Co-authors: Louwrens, L.J. & Kotzé, A.E.).

Book chapters:

2012:    From ‘beleaguered’ to ‘emancipated’ orthography: The case of Northern Sotho. In: Hugues Steve Ndinga-Koumba-Binza & Sonja E Bosch (eds), Language Science and Language Technology in Africa: Festschrift for Justus C Roux. Stellenbosch: SUN MeDia: pp. 145–162.
2014:    Kosch, Ingeborg M & Bosch, Sonja E. 2014. African languages as languages of teaching and learning. In: Liesel Hibbert, & Christa van der Walt (eds), Multilingual Universities in South Africa: Reflecting Society in Higher Education. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.

Journal articles

  • 1981:    Economy in the verbal relative construction in Northern Sotho.  LIMI 9.1 & 9.2:45–50, Unisa.
  • 1988:    “Imperfect Tense-a” of Northern Sotho revisited. South African Journal of African Languages 8(1):1–6.
  • 1993:    German-speaking pioneers in African linguistics and literature with special reference to Northern Sotho.  South African Journal of African Languages, Supplement 13(2):2–5.
  • 1998:    Thoughts on suppletion in Northern Sotho. South African Journal of African Languages 18(2):33-40. 
  • 2003:    Sandhi under the spotlight.  South African Journal of African Languages 23(3):144–153.
  • 2004:    Significance of absence: The case of zero and empty morphs. South African Journal of African Languages 24(4):245–251.
  • 2005:    Discontinuous elements in morphology. South African Journal of African Languages 25(3):161–170.
  • 2011:    Descriptive issues of derivation and inflection in Sesotho sa Leboa (Northern Sotho) with particular reference to ‘number’. Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies 29(1):89–96.
  • 2011     Innovation and compromise in K. Endemann’s dictionary of the Sotho language (1911). South African Journal of African Languages 31(1):110–120.
  • 2012:    Challenges of predictability and consistency in the first comprehensive Sotho dictionary. Lexikos 22:250–266.
  • 2013:    Expectation levels in dictionary consultation and compilation. Lexikos 23:201–208.
  • 2013:    An analysis of the Oxford Bilingual School Dictionary: Northern Sotho and English (De Schryver 2007). Lexikos 23:611–627. 

Professional positions, fellowships & awards

  • Editor-in-chief of the South African Journal of African Languages
  • Executive Board member of the African Language Association of Southern Africa
  • Recipient of 1999 Nasou - Via Afrika Prize for Linguistic Studies in African Languages 


  • Research into Northern Sotho cultural and linguistic heritage as a national treasure.