Department of Information Science

Dr N Wessels

College of Human Sciences
School of Arts
Department: Information Science
Senior Lecturer
Tel: 012 429 6416
Fax: 012 429 3792


  • MInf (UNISA)

Currently teaching

  • Information literacy
  • Portfolio work

Fields of academic interests

  • Information literacy;
  • Family literacy;
  • School libraries


Book chapters:

Journal articles

  • Machet, MP & Wessels, N. 2006. Family literacy projects and the public library. Innovation 32:55-73.
  • Wessels, N & Knoetze, H. 2006. Using family literacy in a multifaceted intervention strategy to establish school libraries in disadvantaged communities. Innovation 33:44-58.
  • Wessels, N & Knoetze, H. 2008. Collection development in high-poverty school libraries in multilingual environments. Mousaion 26(2) SPES:290-303.
  • Wessels, N. 2011. Methodology in action: exploring action research for Masters studies in information science. Innovation 42:98-112.
  • Wessels, N & Mnkeni-Saurombe, N. 2012. Teachers’ use of a school library in a South African township school: closing the literacy gap. SA Jnl Libs & Info Sci 78(1):45-56. 
  • Wessels, N & Knoetze, H. 2013. Information literacy and social media in the context of South African schools. Mousaion 31(3):97-109.
  • Wessels, N, Mnkeni-Saurombe, N & Knoetze, H. 2014. Narratives of information literacy in South African township schools. In: Information Literacy. Lifelong Learning and Digital Citizenship in the 21st Century. New York City: Springer International Publishing:297-308.

Paper presentations

  • Machet, MP & Wessels, N. 2005. Family Literacy and Public Libraries. Annual Conference of Metropolitan Libraries Section of IFLA, Riga, September 11-16.
  • Wessels, N. 2005. Evaluation of Information Sources. Provincial Conference on ELITS & E-Education, March 21-23.
  • Wessels, N. 2005. Family Literacy in Schools. Provincial Conference on ELITS & E-Education, Bloemfontein, March 21-23.
  • Machet, MP & Wessels, N. 2006. Intervention programme in disadvantaged non-reading communities in South Africa. Fourth International Conference on the Book, Boston, October 20-22.
  • Wessels, N. 2006. Exploring action research for Master studies. RETIG/SIG Pre-conference symposium, LIASA, Pretoria, September 25-29.
  • Wessels, N. 2006. Implementation and study of “Revitalisation” process in three school libraries. ISASA Conference, Pretoria, August 9.
  • Wessels, N. 2006. The school library as a reading tool. USA People to People Meeting, Pretoria, May 25.
  • Wessels, N. 2007. Capacity building of teachers in a reading and literacy programme in two primary schools in Atteridgeville. SAARDHE, Pretoria, July 1-4.
  • Wessels, N & Knoetze, H. 2007. Book collections in school libaries in multilingual environments equal problems: fact or fiction. IFLA: Section on Library Services to Multicultuarla Populations in cooperation with Libraries for Children and Young Adults Section and Reading Section, Pretoria, August 15 -17.
  • Wessels, N & Knoetze, H. 2009. Real life experiences in setting-up school libraries in townships. UNISA conference on Reading Promotion and Storyytelling for Children, Pretoria, August 19-21.
  • Wessels, N. 2010. Innovation in school libraries in townships: a case study. 12th LIASA Annual Conference, Gauteng, 27 September – 1 October.
  • Wessels, N & Mnkeni-Saurombe, N. 2010. Reading promotion in a township school library: a “school librarian’s” story. The 2nd UNISA conference on reading Promotion & Storytelling Festival for Children, Pretoria, October 6 – 8.
  • Wessels, N. 2011. The book: power and potential in South African township school libraries. ALIA national library & information technicians conference, Perth, September 12 – 16.
  • Wessels, N & Knoetze, H. 2012. The impact of social media on children’s information literacy. 4th Unisa Children’s Reading Conference, Pretoria, September11 – 12  .
  • Wessels, N. 2013. Strategies for deep learning in an information literacy module in an ODL environment. Doctoral Forum of the 7th Biennial ProLISSA Conference, Pretoria, March 5-6
  • Wessels, N, Mnkeni-Saurombe, N & Knoetze, H. 2014. Narratives of Information Literacy in South African Township Schools. ECIL2014 Conference, Dubrovnik, October 20-23.
  • Wessels, N. 2015. Who are you indexing for? The information literate of the 21st century. ASAIB Annual Conference May, 21 & 22 2015.
  • Wessels, N 2016. Real life experiences in setting up school libraries in townships. LIASA Gateng North/HELIG Infolit Day, Universityof Pretoria, August 31.

Poster presentations

  • Machet, MP & Wessels, N. 2004. Family literacy in the public and community library: a Poster Presentation. 29th IBBY Congress, September 5-9.
  • Wessels, N & Knoetze H. 2013. Spaces for school libraries: a Poster Presentation. African Library Summit,  July 1-5.

Professional positions, fellowships & awards

Professional career:

  • Ms Wessels started her career in information work in the early eighties and has worked extensively as an information worker in various companies and organisations.
  • She has been in the department since 2001 and has taught various subjects from first year to honours level. She  currently teaches information literacy. Ms Wessels acts as study leader for Master students. She was also involved in community projects in disadvantaged primary schools.

Professional involvement:

  • Member of the following associations: LIASA; RASA