AHVS Department Statement of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

Updated August 8, 2023

From its foundation the Department of Art History and Visual Studies was designed to address issues of inequity within the discipline and provide a venue for research and study of diverse world cultures. Since that time our commitment to developing cultural acumen and supporting issues of social justice has grown to become a fundamental part of our community. 
Pursuing equity is an ongoing and active process. And we commit to providing a safe, welcoming and inclusive environment for all members of our community: students, staff, and faculty; past, present, and future. 
We recognize that the historic creation of images and structures often served to support ideologies and hegemonies of privilege and that their subsequent study has often been embedded with echoes of and/or new messages of oppression. We work to develop pedagogies that address and confront these systemic issues, to create culturally safe and inclusive teaching, learning and work spaces, and to welcome the voices, perspectives, and experiences of Indigenous peoples, Black, and people of colour, as well as women and those of other historically marginalized communities.
We, as a department, operate within the context of the Faculty of Fine Arts and are guided by the Faculty’s Equity Plan. We are also members of the university at large. UVic has committed to issues of social justice, equity, and inclusion. You can find recent university-wide reports, recommendations, and resources here:
University Strategic Framework
Equity Action Plan
Indigenous Plan
Equity and Human Rights Office




The Scarborough Charter:

The 4 Principles: 

1. Encourage Black flourishing by removing structural barriers to equity, inclusion and social justice, with full recognition of our intersectional identities, while advancing the innovative research, critical thinking and engaged dissemination of knowledge that foster substantive equality, human dignity, and sustainability

2. Using EDI principles to educate and to innovate; to be alive to complexity and proactive in the face of crisis; to foster fundamental questioning through rigorous, respectful engagements across difference; and to enable societal transformation.

3. Foster mutuality and acknowledge the multiple social relations and modes of societal action upon which universities and colleges depend and for which they are accountable

4. Acknowledging, respecting, and acting responsively in the face of Black life, in its full complexity and intersectionality


Rick Hansen's accessibility resources: primarily about construction and arrangements concerning physical mobility barriers, but good to keep in mind for classroom design.

Across Campus and In Our Community

Equity and Human Rights is a resource for all UVic community members, providing education, information, help and advice to build and support an inclusive campus. Areas of support include:

  • sexualized violence
  • discrimination, harassment and bullying
  • employment equity
  • education and initiatives across campus


The UVic Students’ Society has an extensive list of clubs, teams and societies on campus. Several of these support students who identify as belonging to underrepresented groups.


Black, Indigenous or Person of Colour (BIPOC)

  • Resources for BIPOCs is a list of community resources and information for those who identify as Black, Indigenous or as a Person of Colour. UVic’s Centre for Youth and Society maintains this list.
  • Students of Colour Collective (SOCC) is a group of self-identified Black, Indigenous and/or Persons of Colour operating as an advocacy group out of UVic. SOCC’s priorities are mental health, advocacy, decolonization, anti-racism, inclusion and diversity creation work, as well as providing educational resources for individuals.
  • Commit to action to end racism. This is an invitation to members of the UVic community to support the end of racism through a list of action items. The Equity and Human Rights office maintains this list.
  • Indigenous student supports 


LGBTQ+, gender-diverse and trans students

  • Gender diversity and trans inclusion resources supporting the inclusion of gender diversity at UVic. UVic’s Equity and Human Rights office maintains this list.
  • LGBTQ+ Resources is a list of community resources and other information for individuals with diverse gender identities and sexual orientations. UVic’s Centre for Youth and Society maintains this list.
  • Vancouver Island Trans Resources is a list of community resources for trans, nonbinary, two-spirit and other gender-diverse people on Vancouver Island, in areas such as support, advocacy and health. UVic’s Chair in Transgender Studies maintains this list.


International students

  • funding opportunities
  • Co-op program
  • resources & programs, including a Global Community newsletter
  • living in Canada


Students with disabilities

  • Centre for Accessible Learning (CAL)
  • scholarships
  • specialized facilities and services
  • Learning Assistance Program (LAP)
  • Society for Students with a Disability (SSD)
  • STEPS Forward
  • CanAssist programs
    • CanWork – collaboration with Co-operative Education and Career Services
    • inclusive sports and recreation 


Indigenous students

UVic offers support to Indigenous students throughout their university experience – from their first contact through graduation and beyond.

UVic’s Office of Indigenous Academic and Community Engagement (IACE) connects Indigenous students with the educational, financial and cultural resources available on campus and in local communities. These include:


Here is a page maintained by the Centre for Youth and Society at UVic (The Centre for Youth and Society’s Community Resource Hub) https://onlineacademiccommunity.uvic.ca/communityresourcehub/equity-diversity/

The page I have linked to specifically contains the centre’s EDI resources, which is updated frequently.


Additional Education