Fall 2021 - INDG 101 D200

Introduction to Indigenous Studies (3)

Class Number: 3893

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu 2:30 PM – 5:20 PM
    AQ 5018, Burnaby



Introduces the nature and goals of Indigenous Studies as an academic discipline that emphasizes cultures and homelands of First Peoples. Students with credit for FNST 101 may not take this course for further credit. Breadth-Humanities/Social Sciences.


This course introduces the Indigenous peoples of Canada from all provinces and regions. Class lectures are structured around introducing each regions’ ancient past, recent history and contemporary issues. Themes covered include:   

  1. Indigenous logic and the diversity of thought and practice
  2. Ecological relationships
  3. Major historic and political events and relevance to modern concerns
  4. Legal precedents (judicial, federal, and provincial)
  5. Sovereignty and Self-determination
  6. Colonization
  7. Food security
  8. Spirituality
  9. Civil rights
  10. Social and environmental justice
  11. Aesthetic Expressions


An introduction to the nature and goals of Indigenous Studies as an academic discipline; survey of prehistory, traditional cultures and Aboriginal languages of Indigenous Peoples in what we today call Canada. The content includes an examination of historical and contemporary concerns, and pays special attention to concepts of Indigenous identity, oral histories, aesthetic expressions, and justice.


  • Participation 10%
  • Paper Proposal 5%
  • Short Paper (4 pages) 30%
  • Paper Outline 5%
  • Weekly Quiz (7 x 5% and 2 x 7.5%) 50%


Paper Proposal and Outline and Final Paper   The term paper is where students will research a specific topic of their choice upon approval of the instructor and/or the TA.  All papers must show research using published sources, and consider an Indigenous perspective. Further details will be discussed in class.

General Notes:
   • Any assignment handed in late will receive a 5% per day penalty
   • Electronic devices are discouraged in class
   • Deferred grades will be given only on the basis of authenticated medical disability
   • Students requiring accommodations as a result of a disability must contact the Centre for Accessible Learning at 778-782-3112 or caladmin@sfu.ca 
   • All students are expected to read and understand SFU policies with regard to academic honesty and student conduct (S10). These policies are available at: http://sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student.html.

Department of Indigenous Studies
: www.sfu.ca/indg. Saywell Hall 9089.


In addition to completing assignments, attendance of all lectures is required.

Course Protocol: This course is made up of visual lectures with little text on lecture slides. Students are responsible to know and understand all lecture material (it is highly recommended you take notes!), including visual images, items from class discussions, and all terms from course readings as outlined in this syllabus and as supplied by the instructor. Please note, to accommodate the complexities inherent in life, this syllabus is subject to modification in order to meet student needs and interests. Students are responsible to remain informed at all times.  

MANDATORY:  You must access your SFU email and Canvas  NO EXCEPTIONS!!!





All readings will be available in SFU CANVAS.



Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity web site http://www.sfu.ca/students/academicintegrity.html is filled with information on what is meant by academic dishonesty, where you can find resources to help with your studies and the consequences of cheating.  Check out the site for more information and videos that help explain the issues in plain English.

Each student is responsible for his or her conduct as it affects the University community.  Academic dishonesty, in whatever form, is ultimately destructive of the values of the University. Furthermore, it is unfair and discouraging to the majority of students who pursue their studies honestly. Scholarly integrity is required of all members of the University. http://www.sfu.ca/policies/gazette/student/s10-01.html


Teaching at SFU in fall 2021 will involve primarily in-person instruction, with approximately 70 to 80 per cent of classes in person/on campus, with safety plans in place.  Whether your course will be in-person or through remote methods will be clearly identified in the schedule of classes.  You will also know at enrollment whether remote course components will be “live” (synchronous) or at your own pace (asynchronous).

Enrolling in a course acknowledges that you are able to attend in whatever format is required.  You should not enroll in a course that is in-person if you are not able to return to campus, and should be aware that remote study may entail different modes of learning, interaction with your instructor, and ways of getting feedback on your work than may be the case for in-person classes.

Students with hidden or visible disabilities who may need class or exam accommodations, including in the context of remote learning, are advised to register with the SFU Centre for Accessible Learning (caladmin@sfu.ca or 778-782-3112) as early as possible in order to prepare for the fall 2021 term.