Indigenous Content Requirement

1. Learner outcomes for the Indigenous Content Requirement (ICR) are as follows:

  • Identify Indigenous worldviews, knowledge, and practices that relate to faculty specialties
  • Identify culturally appropriate ways of engaging Indigenous communities in faculty specialties
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the effects of stereotyping, prejudice, and racism on interactions between First Nations, Inuit, and Métis and others in Canadian society
  • Demonstrate knowledge of Canadian Indigenous peoples’ history
  • Analyze the impact of legal decisions on Aboriginal and treaty rights, including the duty to consult
  • Identify approaches to reconciliation between First Nations, Inuit, and Métis and others in Canadian society
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the impacts of colonialism on Indigenous peoples and strategies to resist assimilation
  • Articulate the relationship between land, culture, language, and identity in Indigenous communities
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the nature of the relationship between the Crown and Indigenous peoples, as defined by treaties and agreements, or lack of them
  • Contribute to strategies for improving Indigenous communities’ well-being

2. Learner outcomes should be modified to reflect course level expectations.

  • Academic Units are encouraged to develop their own discipline-specific outcomes.

3. For more information on the Indigenous Content Requirement, please see our FAQ about the Indigenous Content Requirement (ICR) page.

  • We thank Confederation College for their inspiration and for developing a strong set of learner outcomes that we adapted. 

First Peoples Principles of Learning & Resources

Decorative: A thumbnail of the full poster; click image for hot link

Click image above for full poster from First Nations Education Steering Committee.

A. Learning First People's Classroom Resources (web page) includes a number of useful materials such as the following:

  • Though often aimed at an elementary or secondary audience, there is much that can be usefully adapted for use at the university level.

b. A useful frame is the "First People Principles of Learning" (poster),which reflects a respectful and holistic approach to teaching and learning."

B. First Peoples Principles of Learning

  • "Learning ultimately supports the well-being of the self, the family, the community, the land, the spirits, and the ancestors."
  • "Learning is holistic, reflexive, reflective, experiential, and relational (focused on connectedness, on reciprocal relationships, and a sense of place)."
  • "Learning involves recognizing the consequences of one's actions."
  • "Learning involves generational roles and responsibilities."
  • "Learning recognizes the role of indigenous knowledge."
  • "Learning is embedded in memory, history, and story."
  • "Learning involves patience and time."
  • "Learning requires exploration of one's identity."
  • "Learning involves recognizing that some knowledge is sacred and only shared with permission and/or in certain situations."

Exploring Indigenous Education: A Video Series

A. "Exploring Aboriginal Education: Susan Dion" is a 2013 series from The Learning Exchange that "gives a straightforward account of the historical perspective educators need to think about as they work collaboratively to support Aboriginal education."

  • "She speaks of the need to be co-learners who approach their participation from a position of respect for Aboriginal world views."
  • Though directed at a younger demographic than ours, the videos make excellent points for all instructors.

B. The Videos

1. "Susan Dion - What is the most important change in the current education of Indigenous peoples?" (2.18 m)

What is the most important change in the current education of Indigenous peoples?

from The Learning Exchange (1) on Vimeo.

2. "Susan Dion - What actions of non-Indigenous educators might have the greatest impact for students?" (3.34 m)

What actions of non-Indigenous educators might have the greatest Impact for students?

from The Learning Exchange (1) on Vimeo.

3. "Susan Dion - What can educators do to support the learning of all students?" (7.07 m)

What can educators do to support the learning of all students?

from The Learning Exchange (1) on Vimeo.

4. "Susan Dion - How should Aboriginal content be taught?" (4.28 m)

How should Aboriginal content be taught?

from The Learning Exchange (1) on Vimeo.

5. "Susan Dion - Appropriation" (5.56 m)


from The Learning Exchange (1) on Vimeo.

6. "Susan Dion - Rethinking Current Practice" (7.31 m)

Rethinking Current Practice

from The Learning Exchange (1) on Vimeo.

7. "Susan Dion - Teachers as Allies" (3.28 m)

Teachers as Allies

from The Learning Exchange (1) on Vimeo.

8. "Susan Dion - Doing the Work of Learning" (1.59 m)

Doing the Work of Learning from The Learning Exchange (1) on Vimeo.

Critical Practices for Anti-Bias Education

Decorative: "Critical Practices for Anti-Bias Education"


A. "Critical Practices for Anti-Bias Education" (pdf) "offers practical strategies for ... implementing culturally responsive pedagogy and describes how teachers can bring anti-bias values to life by" ...

  • "[B]uilding and drawing on intergroup awareness, understanding and skills"
  • "[C]reating classroom environments that reflect diversity, equity and justice"
  • "[E]ngaging families and communities in ways that are meaningful and culturally competent"
  • "[E]ncouraging students to speak out against bias and injustice"
  • "[I]ncluding anti-bias curricula as part of larger individual, school and community action"
  • "[S]upporting students’ identities and making it safe for them to fully be themselves"
  • "[U]sing instructional strategies that support diverse learning styles and allow for deep exploration of anti-bias themes."

B. Critical Practices for Anti-bias Education is organized into four sections.

1. "In each section, you can explore recommended practices [including specific teaching/in-class activities], find helpful explanations, and learn how each practice connects to anti-bias education":  

a. Instruction 

  • Critical Engagement with Material
  • Differentiated Instruction
  • Cooperative and Collaborative Learning
  • Real-World Connections
  • Values-Based Assessment, Evaluation and Grading

b. Classroom Culture

  • Honoring Student Experience
  • Thoughtful Classroom Setup and Structure
  • Shared Inquiry and Dialogue
  • Social and Emotional Safety
  • Values-Based Behavior Management

c. Family and Community Engagement

  • Culturally Sensitive Communication
  • Inclusion of Family and Community Wisdom
  • Increased Connections Among Families
  • Use of Local Resources
  • Engagement with Community Issues and Problems

d. Teacher Leadership

  • Self-Awareness and Cultural Competency
  • Speaking Up and Responding to Prejudice, Bias and Stereotypes
  • Building Alliances
  • Leading Beyond the Classroom
  • Ongoing Reflection and Learning

2. "Social Justice Standard: The Teaching Tolerance Anti-Bias Framework"

  • A fifth section includes "a set of anchors, grade-level outcomes and school-based scenarios to show what anti-bias attitudes and behavior may look like in the classroom."
  • The section and activities designed for grades 9-12 can easily be adapted for university use.

C. Further Resources

X̱wi7x̱wa Library: An Indigenous Approach to Categorizing Knowledge

Decorative: A picture of the Xwi7xwa library with the caption, "The Xwi7xwa building was designed after 'pit houses' created by Interior Salish nations. Photo by Jessica Woolman"


"This Library Takes an Indigenous Approach to Categorizing Books" (post) introduces the "X̱wi7x̱wa Library (pronounced whei-wha) at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver" that "aims to counter Western, colonial bias and better reflect the knowledge of Indigenous peoples."

  • "[T]he publication industry, classification systems like the DDC [Dewey Decimal System] and Library of Congress, and libraries themselves are all ultimately rooted in colonial ways of generating knowledge."
  • "By offering an alternative to the widely used Dewey Decimal and Library of Congress classification systems, this library aims to take steps toward decolonizing the way information is sorted, cataloged, and shared."

1. Some Challenges

a. Categorization Systems

"[M]ainstream library systems reflect Western methods of sorting information, rather than Indigenous methods."

  • "[S]ubject headings [are often] part of the issue ... sort[ing] Native topics into the history-related sections of the DDC."
  • "As a result, Native peoples are treated as historic artifacts instead of a living group of people with present-day struggles."
  • As well, "[s]ystems like the DDC and Library of Congress ... sort according to alphabetical order.
  • "Canadian First Nations libraries organize information on Indigenous communities geographically according to region, ... reflecting a sense of place."

b. Language Challenges

  • "[T]he systems also can’t easily incorporate Native American languages that use non-Roman characters in the spelling of certain words."

c. Western Bias

"Western bias also plays a role in the way Indigenous literature gets shelved."

  • "Native American creation stories get sorted with folklore or fairytales, for example, while biblical tales are in the nonfiction section."

d. Books That Reinforce Stereotypes

  • "[B]ooks filled with harmful stereotypes and false information about Indigenous communities ... perpetuat[e] stereotypes."

2. Some of X̱wi7x̱wa Library's Responses

  • "X̱wi7x̱wa helps counter this bias by more accurately representing Indigenous knowledge and culture."

a. Cataloging and Classification System

  • "It ... us[es] a cataloging and classification system that was designed by an Indigenous librarian ... an adapted version of the Brian Deer Classification system, ... created in 1974 by Brian Deer, a Kahnawake librarian."
  • "The system incorporates Indigenous perspectives when categorizing books."
  • "It makes research easier, but informally, it also teaches."

b. Using Tribes' Preferred Names in Subject Headings

"One of the most important ways it does this ... is by using subject headings that reflect a tribe’s preferred name."

  • “'Westerners use their labels, so it makes tribes invisible,' Tarango said. 'This is a way of reestablishing identity and saying these are our names and these our people.'"
  • "By using Indigenous names and with Indigenous librarians on staff, X̱wi7x̱wa is able to provide a resource that organizes information in a way to which Indigenous students are more accustomed."

c. Separating Out Books That Perpetuate Stereotypes

This separate collection "provide[s] an opportunity to explain to non-Indigenous folks why such material perpetuates stereotypes."

  • It is also "important in teaching non-Native students to critically analyze common misinformation about Indigenous culture."

3. Benefits

a. "By using Indigenous names and with Indigenous librarians on staff, X̱wi7x̱wa is able to provide a resource that organizes information in a way to which Indigenous students are more accustomed."

  • "The library’s Indigenous approach to categorization and relationship building with students makes it a beloved source of community for British Columbia’s Indigenous people."

b. "The library is also intended to serve as a learning tool for non-Indigenous students."

  • It helps "educat[e] non-Indigenous students on how libraries’ use of Western subject headings and categorization methods negatively impact Native peoples."
  • It "articulate[s] the need to those people who aren’t aware and hopefully get[s] their buy-in that these are issues that need to be addressed."
  • "[A] resource like X̱wi7x̱wa can generate productive conversations."

Developing Palliative Care Programs in First Nations Communities

Decorative: "Improving End-of-life Care in First Nations Communities"


"Developing Palliative Care Programs in First Nations Communities: A Workbook" (web page) "is a major outcome of the EOLFN project and is intended for use by First Nations communities."

A. The Workbook

"It was developed by the research team that included the four First Nations community partners and is intended as a guide and a resource for other communities."

  • "This workbook provides an outline for creating local palliative care programs in First Nations communities."
  • "The hope is that this workbook will support other First Nations communities interested in developing a palliative care program."
  • "It offers a process for community development and change, practical guides, ideas, and lessons learned."

B. Tools & Resources

"The workbook and tools/resources are available for downloading at no cost at the links below":

1.  Phase 3 – Experiencing a Catalyst

2. Phase 4 – Creating the Palliative Care Program

a. Hiring the Community Facilitator

b. Creating a Timeline

c. Understanding Community Needs and Perspectives

d. Developing the Workplan

e. Formalizing the Leadership Team

f. Creating Palliative Care Program Guidelines

3. Phase 5 – Growing the Palliative Care Program

a. Strengthening Community Relationships

b. Building External Linkages

i. MOU

ii. Hospital Discharge Planning

iii. HSIP Proposal

iv. Journey Mapping

c. Promoting Education

i. Palliative Care for Front Line Workers in First Nations Communities

ii. Finding Our Way Through Navigating Loss and Grief in First Nation Life

iii. Palliative Care in First Nations Community Brochures

iv. Palliative Care Community Awareness Sessions

v. Advance Care Planning

vi. Cultural Sensitivity Resources

d. Providing Care

i. Naotkamegwanning Wiisokotaatiwin Program

ii. Six Nations Shared Care Outreach Team

e. Advocating for Individuals and Families

C. "Supporting the Development of Palliative Care Programs in First Nations Communities: A Guide for External Partners"

1. "The guide is intended for use by external partners, including health care providers and policy and programs developers, to support First Nations communities in their efforts to develop a local palliative care program."

  • "The guide articulates the role of the external partners in the community capacity development process."
  • "From a participatory approach to development, it situates the external partner as creating and supporting the environment for success."
  • "The First Nations community members are the primary change agents but external partners play a critical role in supporting change.

2. "The guide ​and powerpoint presentation are available for downloading at no cost at the links below":

Inuit Nunangat Map

Decorative: A small image of the map


"Inuit Nunangat Map" (web page) is a map (pdf) that "was developed by Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami."

  • "Inuit Nunangat is the Inuit homeland in Canada, encompassing the land claims regions of Nunavut, Nunavik in Northern Quebec, Nunatsiavut in Northern Labrador and the Inuvialuit Settlement Region of the Northwest Territories."
  • "It is inclusive of land, water and ice, and describes an area encompassing 35 percent of Canada’s landmass and 50 percent of its coastline."
  • The map "is free for download and use without modifications in non-commercial applications. Please credit Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami."

Indigenous Ally Toolkit

Decorative: The cover of the Indigenous Ally Toolkit


"Indigenous Ally Toolkit" (pdf; also available in French), launched by the Montreal Urban Aboriginal Community Strategy Network, "provides suggested steps and self-reflections for people who want to be an ally" ("ConnectR, 'Head'" path).

Providing a basic glossary, the pdf covers the following topics:

  • "So You Want to Be an Ally"
  • "How Can I Be a Good Ally?"
  • Three Steps: "Be Critical of Any Motivations," "Start Learning," "Act Accordingly"
  • "Things Not to Say"
  • How "Workplaces & Organizations Can Practice Good Allyship"
  • "The Do's"

ConnectR: Indigenous Links and Resources

Decorative: ConnectR logo


"ConnectR" (web site) is the "latest project" of  Reconciliation Saskatoon "and evolved out of a desire to share the opportunities we experience through Reconciliation Saskatoon beyond our circle" ("The ConectR Story").

1. It provides information and "[o]pportunities to":

  • "listen to each other and build new relationships"
  • "learn from one another"
  • "build a shared future"
  • "create change and live Reconciliation together."

2. Four "paths" are included to explore the site:

3. "Themes" with links and resources include the following:

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