Indigenous Learning

Indigenous Learning is an interdisciplinary, cross-cultural department open to both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students. Borrowing from subjects including history, geography, anthropology and sociology, this program will examine societal structures and the ways the Indigenous population relates to mainstream populations in Canada.

Throughout our programs we aim to enhance your awareness of Aboriginal life experiences, culture and political issues. We focus on the current reality of Aboriginal Peoples as opposed to the traditional, anthropological approach. While history is a component of your Indigenous Learning studies, it will be within the context of lived implications in order to challenge assumptions and mistaken understandings about Aboriginal Peoples.

As a student you will learn 

  • Archival research
  • Census data analysis
  • Cultural awareness
  • Government record analysis
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Written and oral testimony and communications

Our Indigenous Learning programs attract local students and learners from Southern Ontario, Quebec, the United States and as far away as Saudi Arabia and Norway. Due to our focus on experiential learning, the diversity of the student population helps to provide a broadly-based classroom experience and foster cross-cultural compassion.

The Lakehead Advantage

Unlike similar programs across Canada, our Department of Indigenous Learning focuses on the present reality of our Aboriginal population rather than taking an anthropological or historical approach. This means you will graduate with the knowledge to critically engage with, and meet the needs of, such populations as they exist today. Our graduates have been very successful securing jobs as educators and community leaders and in various public sectors due to this real-world focus.

Our location in Northwestern Ontario makes Lakehead University the ideal institution to pursue the field of Indigenous Learning. Many Aboriginal communities and organizations operate within our region including Fort William First Nation, Nishnawbe Aski Nation, Matawa First Nations Management and many others. Our Department maintains close ties to these communities and organizations which regularly contribute unique course content and learning opportunities. 

Our department is relatively small and conducive to interaction with both your peers and professors. We encourage you to take advantage of the friendly, personal learning environment and reach out to faculty for course help as well as potential job and/or mentorship opportunities.