Preserving Indigenous knowledge with the use of Technology

Module 3

On reading Learning Module 3 and venturing on the site, I saw where Indigenous Knowledge (IK) is being used in many African countries with positive results. I wanted to know how IK is applied here in North America and what the reactions of Indigenous people are. So I decided to do research on IK here in Canada. Below are some of the sites I found.

1.The site below is the Aboriginal Education Research center which offers a variety of information on the development and achievements on IK in Canada.

Educational Decolonization is a key activity of the Aboriginal Education Research Centre. Through the development of innovative research projects with diverse partners, AERC is exploring many facets of Aboriginal education as it develops vibrant ethical dialogic processes and results that contribute to increased success for Aboriginal learners” ( Retrieved November 7, 2012).

Below are the objectives and achievements of the AERC.


The Aboriginal Education Research Centre (AERC) at the University of Saskatchewan emerged as a response to the College of Education’s desire to create and coordinate research activity concerning First Nations, Métis and Inuit education. Established as the number one developmental priority in the College of Education’s 2003-2007 Integrated Plan, AERC seeks to achieve the following goals:

•Research and study the needs of Aboriginal student populations, successful pedagogy and practices, and experimental methods to assist in shaping future policy and directions of provincial and band schools;

•Improve the educational capacity of schools to retain and meet the needs of Aboriginal students, while improving the knowledge and sensitivity of other students and school staff to Aboriginal Peoples;

•Develop supportive partnerships with Aboriginal communities, Elders, institutions and organizations;

•Build local and Canadian capacity to value and learn from the knowledge and educational practices of diverse Aboriginal Peoples;

•Mobilize knowledge and practices among educational institutions through dialogues, conferences, publications and electronic resources on Aboriginal education;

•Develop research activities as decolonizing sites to improve Indigenous education across disciplines, across Canada and internationally;

•Dialogue with Aboriginal communities to develop collaborative protocols and practices for ethical research, learning and teaching;

•Support and enrich graduate students and faculty in scholarly interests and research in Aboriginal education;

•Create local, provincial, national and international partnerships with other pre-eminent universities and groups.

AERC offers synergistic activity around Aboriginal education through respectful dialogues with representatives of diverse Aboriginal organizations and communities.  Collaborative partnerships include scholars, students, Elders, and others who wish to address transformative educational theory, policies, practices and praxis. AERC activities are intended to improve education experiences of Aboriginal Peoples, as well as broaden research capacity in the College of Education. ( Retrieved November 7, 2012)

2.The site below is organized solely by first Nation people for the enhancement of education among First Nation community.

Below are the objectives of the Consortium:

The First Nations Adult Higher Education Consortium (FNAHEC) is composed of ten Indigenous colleges and institutional members in the provinces of Alberta and Manitoba. FNAHEC is founded on the premise that it is First Nations people’s own infrastructures and mechanisms that will comprehensively address the development needs of constituent First Nations through the promotion and enhancement of respective cultures.

Since the founding of FNAHEC, members have collectively or individually established linkages and partnerships with Aboriginal groups and various other agencies and institutions (both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal) that focus on Aboriginal learning. FNAHEC has also reached out to establish relationships and affiliations at the international level, for example with the American Indian Higher Education Consortium and with the World Indigenous Nations Higher Education Consortium and its Board of Affirmation (Accreditation).

Members of FNAHEC have been directly involved in education conferences and other major Aboriginal events. For example, FNAHEC hosted the 6th World Indigenous Peoples Conference on Education (WIPCE) in 2002, which was attended by 3,500 people from 26 countries. These various initiatives have contributed to the design and implementation of programs, courses and services to address some of the remaining gaps identified.

Members of FNAHEC have also taken the civic responsibility to offer a wide range of workshops and seminars which address the needs of all learners, including Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal learners. It is important to FNAHEC that the initiatives of the Aboriginal Learning Knowledge Centre mesh with those of FNAHEC as a vehicle for knowledge exchange, when promoting standards of excellence and also when contributing to the effective resolution of Aboriginal learning issues. As such, the Knowledge Centre’s strategic plan reflects the objectives toward which FNAHEC strives. ( Retrieved November 7, 2012


3. I found this site from the Government of Canada out lining the differences between  western knowledge and indigenous knowledge. The site also has a very interesting graph showing the factors influencing traditional knowledge and western knowledge.  The site also has various links such as:

■Why Protect Traditional Knowledge?

■How to Protect Traditional Knowledge

■Limitations of the Intellectual Property Rights Regime in Protecting Traditional Knowledge

■International Initiatives to Protect Traditional Knowledge (Retrieved November 7, 2012)


4. This is another very interesting site from the Heritage department of Canada giving information on Indigenous Knowledge. It also has many links to information on the endeavors of indigenous people in using their traditional knowledge and sharing with the western society. Below is an excerpt from the site:


“However, Indigenous Knowledge is not confined to knowledge of the physical sciences. It is spiritual as well as ecological and embraces ways of knowing that are sometimes characterized as cultural or artistic. Viewing Indigenous Knowledge through categories such as art, science or culture, however, tends to fragment its inherent unity. As Greg Young-Ing describes it, the Traditional Knowledge of Indigenous peoples;

…encompasses a broad range of Indigenous knowledge ranging from: ancient stories, songs and dances; traditional architecture and agricultural; biodiversity related and medicinal, herbal and plant knowledge; ancient motifs, crests and other artistic designs; various artistic mediums, styles, forms and techniques; spiritual and religious institutions and their symbols; and various other forms of Indigenous knowledge” (Retrieved November 12, 2012).


5. The site below informs visitors to the meaning of Indigenous knowledge. I believe it is from an aboriginal perspective. The site provides excerpts of short films of indigenous people, their religious ceremonies, arts and craft, etc.


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