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More Than a Checklist: Meaningful Indigenous Inclusion in Higher Education

[journal article]

Pidgeon, Michelle

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Abstract Since the 1970s there has been increased focus by institutions, government, and Indigenous nations on improving Aboriginal peoples participation and success in Canadian higher education; however disparity continues to be evident in national statistics of educational attainment, social determinants of health, and socio-economic status of Aboriginal compared to non-Aboriginal Canadians. For instance, post-secondary attainment for Aboriginal peoples is still only 8% compared to 20% of the rest of Canada (Statistics Canada, 2008, 2013). A challenge within higher education has been creating the space within predominately Euro-Western defined and ascribed structures, academic disciplines, policies, and practices to create meaningful spaces for Indigenous peoples. Indigenization is a movement centering Indigenous knowledges and ways of being within the academy, in essence transforming institutional initiatives, such as policy, curricular and co-curricular programs, and practices to support Indigenous success and empowerment. Drawing on research projects that span the last 10 years, this article celebrates the pockets of success within institutions and identifies areas of challenge to Indigenization that moves away from the tokenized checklist response, that merely tolerates Indigenous knowledge(s), to one where Indigenous knowledge(s) are embraced as part of the institutional fabric. (author's abstract)
Keywords Canada; educational opportunity; equal opportunity; educational policy; minority; ethnic group; indigenous peoples; social inequality; standard of living; social status; social participation; social integration; cultural identity; university level of education; vocational education; social indicators
Classification Sociology of Education; Macroanalysis of the Education System, Economics of Education, Educational Policy
Document language English
Publication Year 2016
Page/Pages p. 77-91
Journal Social Inclusion, 4 (2016) 1
Issue topic Multidisciplinary Studies in Social Inclusion
ISSN 2183-2803
Status Published Version; peer reviewed
Licence Creative Commons - Attribution