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CAUT Bulletin Archives

December 2009

Aboriginal Voices

Knowledge, Traditions & Values

More than 80 Aboriginal scholars from across Canada parti­­ci­pated in CAUT’s Transforming the Academy conference in Sask­atoon last month.

“The focus on transformation reflects the urgency in Aboriginal educators’ demands that post-secondary institutions recognize cultural differences and Aboriginal learning needs and tra­ditions, particularly the need to integrate and respect the importance of indigenous knowledge and the role of elders in the educational process,” said CAUT president Penni Stewart.

The three-day event was the second conference organized by CAUT’s Working Group on Aboriginal Post-Secondary Education.

Topics on the agenda included negotiating the multicultural classroom, helping individuals improve or achieve their life/work potential, creating research/knowledge mobilization opportunities, supporting Aboriginal graduate students and working conditions among others.

“We assembled two outstanding panels of national presenters, and we were thrilled with the response and parti­cipation in this conference,” Stewart said.

“This is all about making the academy responsive to Aboriginal needs and traditions. Too often, institutional discrimination continues to pose barriers.”