Aga Khan Curricular Strands | Aga Khan Academies

Aga Khan Curricular Strands

The Aga Khan Curricular Strands (AK Strands) are a unique part of the programme offered by the Aga Khan Academies. The AK Strands are areas of learning aimed specifically at developing knowledge, skills and attitudes required by future leaders.

Our goal at the Academies is to develop young people who have strong local roots and are also globally minded. They should be able to become leaders in whichever fields they choose.

To help achieve this goal, we have identified five areas of learning, the Aga Khan Curricular Strands, that we believe are important for our students. These are:

  • Ethics
  • Pluralism
  • Cultures (with an emphasis on Muslim civilisations)
  • Governance and Civil Society
  • Economics for Development.

Implementing the AK Strands

The Aga Khan Curricular Strands are not taught as independent subjects. Instead, we weave them into the existing subject areas of the academic curriculum. They help inform the selection of content and themes for study. The AK Strands also provide direction for school life outside the classroom in areas such as policy making, recruitment, student life and residential life.

Two of the AK Strands, Ethics and Pluralism, help students develop values and dispositions required by ethical leaders. Our students learn about these areas in theory and are also encouraged to practice what they learn in their everyday lives.

Through the other three AK Strands, our students learn about ideas that are important to the functioning of societies. In particular, they learn about how these ideas impact people’s lives in countries of the developing world. The knowledge they gain helps them understand key issues from both local and international perspectives. 

The AK Strands in practice

The Aga Khan Curricular Strands have been developed and tested over several years at the Aga Khan Academy Mombasa. This has led to new ideas and creative methods of teaching.

For example, teachers in different departments are using the AK Strands to collaborate in interesting ways. In one project, year 7 students worked on a unit that related to Governance and Civil Society in both humanities and English. They linked their theoretical understanding of authority structures to their study of the novel, The Giver.

They looked at questions of governance, freedom of choice, security and related ethical questions through the lenses of both subject areas. This allowed for a unique learning experience that was both broad and deep.

Through the Aga Khan Curricular Strands, our students develop attitudes and values that will help them throughout their lives. They also gain knowledge and understanding that will allow them to contribute positively to their societies in the future. 


For more information on the educational programme offered at the Aga Khan Academy Mombasa please visit the Academic Programme page.