Advances in Higher Education Research Seminar

This seminar series highlights original research in college-level learning and instruction. Each seminar is multidisciplinary in scope and addresses the broad themes of our work as instructors, including the cognitive processes by which students learn, and the classroom context in which they do so.

All seminars are free and open to the public. Presentations will be followed by a Q&A session and opportunities for discussion.

Braiding Indigenous knowledges into STEM undergraduate curriculum and practices: An ally’s perspective

Tuesday, May 17, 2:30-3:30 p.m. on Zoom

There is a growing movement to rethink and decolonize Western STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education and make it more inclusive of multiple ways of knowing. These efforts enrich student learning and contribute to more respectful relationships and partnerships with communities, culture, and our natural world. Fueled by the 2015 Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada’s call to “redress the legacy of residential schools and advance the process of Canadian reconciliation”, Canadian post-secondary institutions have reached a point of reckoning. They are charged with planning and implementing programs to train educators with how to infuse Indigenous knowledges, histories, cultures, and experiences into their teaching. The “braiding” of Indigenous and Western ways of knowing together is an approach that acknowledges and explores the unique strengths of different ways of knowing while collectively forming a holistic, reciprocal, and enriched view of the world. This call for change can be a particular challenge for educators in STEM disciplines, where the emphasis on reductionist, objective, and Eurocentric knowledge and practices may be harder to align with the relational, spiritual, and community frameworks that guide Indigenous worldviews, communities, and Peoples.

In this talk, Dr. Welsh will explore various approaches for how STEM educators can begin and sustain their efforts to Indigenize their curricula and pedagogy. Her presentation will be guided by the literature, current programs and models for faculty development, her personal and professional experiences as a non-Indigenous STEM educator, and the generosity and care afforded to her by her Indigenous and non-Indigenous colleagues and mentors.

Register for the May 17 seminar

Ashley WelshDr. Ashley Welsh is cross-appointed between the Central and Science Centres for Teaching and Learning at the University of British Columbia (UBC) as a means to enrich curriculum, pedagogy, the scholarship of teaching and learning, and inclusive/decolonizing practices in undergraduate science and math education. Welsh holds a BSc in Chemical Physics from the University of Guelph and an MA and Ph.D. in Curriculum Studies (Science Education) from UBC.

Questions about the series?