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[Spring Workshop 2021] Will We Walk The Talk? Adopting Technology For Access and Equity in Indigenous Program Delivery

12:00 – 12:50 Friday May 28, 2021

Carmen Rodriguez

Working with pre-service and in-service teachers, some of Carmen’s interests relate to life-long learning, Indigenous pedagogies, and Social Justice. She has welcomed the opportunity to learn through the pandemic on how to respectfully facilitate courses on Indigenous Education using online platforms.

Session Description

Discourses around what constitutes a ‘safe’ environment have changed over the past ten years to reflect the need for equity and equal opportunity for everyone. The word “safe’ begs the questions: Safe from what?; and Safe for whom? In recent years the word ‘safe’ has been replaced by the word ‘courageous’, indicating the creation of spaces that allow vulnerability – a precondition to being courageous.

The pandemic has devastated many communities in more ways than one would wish: from lack of access to health services to pausing face-to-face education, and thus interrupting and limiting the development of relationships and interactions. However, the pandemic has also demonstrated that technology is a useful medium to bring about change by adapting to and adopting ways of doing that might have been less common within Indigenous programming in the Department of Indigenous Education at the University of Victoria.

This presentation will describe how Indigenous pedagogies were incorporated into our programs as part of the forced choice that the pandemic brought about. I will also illustrate ways in which said approaches proved to be effective and valuable for the Indigenous and non-Indigenous students in our programs. Further, while the use of a variety of platforms seemed to have been overwhelming at times, the platforms allowed more access to educational opportunities and more equitable representation in our programs. The questions that remain are: Will we walk the talk when the pandemic is over? Will we be prepared to commit to these new ways of doing and new ways of being?

Recording and Materials