Nov. 24, 2022

New online course offers window into Indigenous Peoples' histories, cultures and lived experience to build intercultural capacity on campus

Beginning the Journey Towards Reconciliation is now available through Enterprise Learning
Beginning the Journey Towards Reconciliation is now available through Enterprise Learning. ICOM Productions

As the University of Calgary celebrates five years since the launch of the Indigenous Strategy, ii’ taa’poh’to’p, Talent Management in the Office of Human Resources, and the Office of Indigenous Engagement are pleased to announce a new online course titled Beginning the Journey Towards Reconciliation. 

"This course is responsive to recommendations outlined in the TRC (Truth and Reconciliation Report) as well as ii’ taa’poh’to’p around intercultural capacity, providing students, faculty and staff (the ability) to engage in an innovative online self-directed learning opportunity by taking the initiative to learn more about Indigenous Peoples' histories, cultures and lived experience to help further our collective journey towards reconciliation," says Dr. Shawna Cunningham, EdD, director, Indigenous Strategy.

Designed to build awareness about ii’ taa’poh’to’p and unpack UCalgary’s role in reconciliation, the course includes videos, storytelling interviews and motion graphics to provide an interactive overview of the diversity and complexity of Indigenous Peoples’ histories and cultures in Canada. Originally delivered in a classroom setting, the course was redeveloped for online self-paced learning by the creative educational consultants at ICOM Productions. 

Regan Ross, business development executive at ICOM, says that their team viewed the project as a responsibility. “We can honestly say that everyone on our team who worked on this course learned something new and important,” Ross says. “We realized that it's these learnings that will help build broader perspectives that will allow us to walk down the path of wise practice and good relations."

Topics covered in Beginning the Journey Towards Reconciliation include: terminology related to Indigenous Peoples, the concept of reconciliation, common misconceptions, stereotypes and cultural appropriation. Participants will explore some common tenets of Indigenous knowledge systems and also learn about and consider the effects of colonization and the legacy of residential schools.

“These courses are so important as they allow the campus community to increase their knowledge about Indigenous Peoples’ cultures and histories,” says Heather Burns, senior consultant, talent management, Human Resources. “Connecting our programs and development opportunities to these important topics will foster an environment of increasing awareness and intercultural capacity.” 

Beginning the Journey Towards Reconciliation is available now through Enterprise Learning, via the portal (requires UCID login).

Jennifer Ksionzena is from the Office of Indigenous Engagement and Heather Burns is from Talent Management.

ii’ taa’poh’to’p, the University of Calgary’s Indigenous Strategy, is a commitment to deep evolutionary transformation by reimagining ways of knowing, doing, connecting and being. Walking parallel paths together, ‘in a good way,’ UCalgary is moving toward genuine reconciliation and Indigenization.