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Course Descriptions

Indigenous Studies


IS-7020(3) INDIGENOUS SELF- DETERMINATION 
This course explores from a variety of perspectives the nature of Indigenous governance from pre- contact with Europeans to the present day.  The major trends and shifts in governance and the impact of assimilation policy are discussed.  A significant component of the course involves a recognition and examination of Aboriginal communities’ attempts to exercise self-determination by developing systems of governance outside the colonial imposed structures of the Indian Act or domestic municipal regimes. Course requirements vary for students completing the 4000 and 7000 level versions of this course.

IS-7021(6) PATHWAYS TO INDIGENOUS WISDOM
This course provides theoretical and practical grounding in Indigenous perspectives of governance based on the teachings and philosophies of Indigenous peoples in the central area of Turtle Island (North America).  The course will be taught by an Elder who is expert in indigenous governance systems. Course requirements vary for students completing the 4000 and 7000 level versions of this course.

IS-7022(6) INDIGENOUS RESEARCH METHODOLOGIES AND ETHICS
This course brings to the academy a pivotal concept for the present and future of Indigenous peoples. How Indigenous peoples face and deal with colonization, imperialism, and globalization will depend upon the critical understanding and realizations of self-determination. The legal, political, social, and cultural connotations around self-determination for Indigenous peoples are considered. The course is focused not only on theoretical considerations but is designed to bring issues of self-determination into the collective and individuals lives of those who identify themselves with the concerns of Indigenous peoples.

Course requirements vary for students completing the 4000 and 7000 level versions of this course.

IS-7023(3) INDIGENOUS PEOPLES, GLOBALIZATION AND DEVELOPMENT (Le3)
Indigenous peoples today are enmeshed in the expanding modern economy, subject to the pressures of both market and government. More and more indigenous communities are rejecting the traditional capitalist vision of development as human and environmental exploitation and focusing on new types of local development projects. This course analyzes some of the conflicts associated with traditional development projects in indigenous communities Taking indigenous peoples as actors, not victims, as its starting point, the class will then examine innovations in indigenous economic development that are culturally respectful, environmentally responsible and build a new sense of community. Course requirements vary for students completing the 4000 and 7000 level versions of this course.  

IS-7024 (3) BIOCULTURAL DIVERSITY CONSERVATION: ISSUES FOR INDIGENOUS PEOPLES (Le3)
The interconnectedness between biological and cultural diversity underscores the critical need for protecting biodiversity and Indigenous cultures.  The course addresses worldwide concerns regarding the loss of biological and cultural diversity.  The central premise of the course is the interrelationship between Indigenous people and their environment.  The course provides comprehensive reading material and learning strategies for developing a holistic understanding of the current global trends on conservation and bioprospecting activities. The course discusses strategies and mechanisms for the protection of Indigenous peoples’ ancestral rights to traditional knowledge and biological resources. Course requirements vary for students completing the 4000 and 7000 level versions of this course.

IS-7030(3/6) DIRECTED READINGS
The program of reading and consultation is arranged between the instructor and the student. The student is required to complete a major research paper or write an examination. Students should contact the Department of Indigenous Studies for details.

IS-7200 (3/6) SEMINAR IN SELECTED TOPICS
This course will focus on particular aspects of Indigenous Studies, with a particular focus on Indigenous governance/policy.  The selected topic will be discussed in seminar format.  It may be approached in a variety of ways, including philosophical, social/cultural, economic, political, or creatively, and may be offered by current faculty, local or visiting scholars from Canada or other nations.  The course may be repeated for credit when the topic varies and course requirements vary for students completing the 4000 level and the 7000 level of this class.

Students should contact the Department of Indigenous Studies for details.