Indigenous programs and courses

Graduate Certificate and Master's Degree in Indigenous Language Revitalization

Program goals

To ensure a generation of language experts who will have the language and academic skills to participate and lead successful language revitalization efforts in Indigenous communities, and to develop language scholars who wil have the expertise to support post-secondary instruction in the revitalization, recovery and maintenance of Indigenous languages.

Offered jointly through the University of Victoria Faculty of Humanities and Faculty of Education.

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Please contact the for application information, requirements and deadlines

History of EDCI 499/591 courses with Indigenous content

EDCI 499/591 Thunderbird/Whale Protection & Welcoming Pole (2005)

The first in a very successful series, this course is pedagogically based on Indigenous teaching and learning experiences: the construction and installation of a Thunderbird/Whale protection pole.

Pre-service teachers, education graduate students and faculty in the class worked alongside an Aboriginal artist in-residence, Fabian Quocksister and Lekwungen mentor carver/educator, Butch Dick.

The students witnessed, experienced and learned as they carved and positioned a Lekwungen and Liekwelthout pole, Schalay’nung Sxwey’ga, in the lobby of the MacLaurin Building, which houses the Faculty of Education.

EDCI 499/591 Earth Fibres (2006)

In this course, students engaged in an experiential educational practice. They learned first hand how teaching and learning occur in an Indigenous world.

Undergraduate and graduate students worked alongside artists-in-residence and wisdom keepers/mentors to witness, experience, learn, and work with a variety of traditional Indigenous fabric and textile arts.

  • Wool Knitting with May Sam
  • Buckskin Printing with Janet Rogers
  • Buckskin Beadwork with Gay Williams
  • Métis Sash with Lynne Hemry
  • Button Blanket with Gina Robertson
  • Cedar Bark Weaving with Caroline & Frank Memnook

Students and instructors collaborated on a two-sided mural, Xaxe Siam Seetla, which was gifted to the Faculty of Education. It now hangs in the faculty’s Curriculum Library.

EDCI 499/591 Earth Songs (2007)

In EDCI 499/591 – Earth Songs: Learning and Teaching in an Indigenous World, students engaged in hearing traditional stories and songs associated with the music traditions. Students began by making the drums and rattles that they will use in creating music. Students learned from sessional instructors, Butch Dick and John Elliott, who were assisted by volunteer knowledge-keepers, Glenn Patterson, Fabian Quocksister and Bradley Dick, who was also a student in the class.

Students, working in teams, developed new songs for the course. Five songs were given to the faculty to be used by faculty and future students. One, composed by Bradley Dick, was given back to the Unity Drummers for safekeeping, which the faculty has the right to use, crediting the Unity Drummers as the keepers of the song.

In December 2007, the students held a performance in Government House for BC’s new Lieutenant Governor, Stephen Point. A five-song CD has been recorded.

EDCI 499/591 StoryStick (2008)

In this course, undergraduate and graduate students worked alongside artist-in-residence and wisdom knowledge keepers to witness, experience, and learn the story traditions of Indigenous peoples.

Students learned, from instructors Dr. Lorna Williams and Butch Dick, the central role of storytelling and stories in teaching and learning, and the cultural protocols, First Nations traditions, art, symbols, materials, and philosophy surrounding stories and storytelling.

Each student created a storystick according to the traditions of First Nations. Groups designed, created, recorded and told a story at a ceremony, which met the protocols of the local First Nations and the University of Victoria.

MILR Theses

NAPOLEON, Art, 2014 - Key Terms and Concepts for Exploring Nîhiyaw Tâpisinowin the Cree Worldview

TATTI, Fibbie, 2015 - The Wind Waits For No One Nı̨hts’ı Dene Ası̨́ Henáoréhɂı̨́le Ǫt’e: Spirituality in a Sahtúgot’ı̨nę Perspective

BELL, Lucy, 2016 - Xaad Kilang T’alang Dagwiieehldang - Strengthening Our Haida Voice

BROWN, Joan, 2016 - Culture is lived; language gives it life

MORRIS, Kāshā Julie Anne, 2017 - K’asba’e T’oh: Sustaining the Intergenerational Transmission of Tāłtān

MILR Projects

BILLY, Janice, 2015 - Exploring the use of traditional Secwepemc stories to teach language

SUTTON, Trena, 2015 - Being T’Sou-ke: What it means to me to be T’Sou-ke ŚW̱ ЌÁLEC̸EN: My inner thoughts

BLANEY, Gail, 2015 - šɛgatč tətᶿ ǰɛʔaǰɛ I will honor my family by living my language

HILL, Callie, 2015 - Kanyen’ke’ha: Awakening Community Conciousness 


TUTCHO, Laura, 2016 - Ets'ulah:  The language is like ets'ulah

RORICK, Layla 2016 - wałyaʕasukʔi naatnaniqsakqin: At the Home of our Ancestors: Hesquiaht Second Language Immersion on Hesquiaht Land

THORBURN, Britt, 2016 - Another Piece of the Puzzle: The Importance of Supporting Indigenous Language Revitalization in the Home

REID, Stephen, 2016 - Reclaiming Dákwanjè for my Family, for my People

BRANT, Joe, 2016 - ENTEWÀ:RON’K "We Will Be Speakers"

DANIELS, Deanna, 2016 - xwi'xwi'em': My Hul'q'umi'num' Storytelling Journey

sqwul' qwul' Hul'q'umi'num': she'kw' 'utl' Xway'waat Danna Daniels' Remembrances

STACEY, Kahtehrón:ni Iris, 2016 - Ientsitewate’nikonhraié:ra’te Tsi Nonkwá:ti Ne Á:se Tahatikonhsontóntie - We Will Turn Our Minds There Once Again, To the Faces Yet To Come

FOXCROFT, Dawn, 2016 - saač’inkin huuḥtakšiiḥ (We are Always Learning Together); Advancing nuučaan̓uł Adult Learners Through Peer-support

ANDERSON, Aiona, 2016 - I Hear My s-kíx-zeʔ (Mother’s) Voice Empowering Me to Relearn Nłeʔkepmxcin

HARRIS, Pearl, 2016 - Lesson Plans for Teaching Resources in a Hul'q'umi'num' Junior Kindergarten

JIM, Jacqueline, 2016 - W̱SÁNEĆ SEN: I am emerging; An Auto-Ethnographic study of life long SENĆOŦEN language learning

GWA'AMUUK, Cheyenne, 2017 - Sharing Sim Algyax: Creating a user-friendly website for sharing language resources

AITKEN, Emily, 2017 - Found My Way of Going Home

UNDERWOOD, David, 2017 - SX̱ENIEṈ YEW̱ ȻNEs I, TW̱E SENĆOŦEN?— How is it that I have come to speak SENĆOŦEN?: My Reflections on Learning and Speaking SENĆOŦEN