Spring 2023 - INDG 403 B100

Indigenous Knowledge in the Modern World (3)

Class Number: 5448

Delivery Method: Blended


  • Course Times + Location:

    Tu 10:30 AM – 12:20 PM
    SWH 9095, Burnaby

  • Prerequisites:

    INDG (or FNST) 101 or INDG (or FNST) 201W.



This course explores the subject of traditional Indigenous knowledge and its contemporary implications for Indigenous programs in such areas as economic development, ecotourism, spiritualism, language retention, biodiversity, ethnoscience, environmentalism, and heritage conservation. Indigenous perspectives on patents, copyrights, and other creative products from traditional culture will also be examined through lecture, guest speakers and seminar presentation. Students with credit for FNST 403 may not take this course for further credit.


Students will experientially learn from Úcwalmicw practices and protocols while coming to understand the tensions that arise with learning from ways of knowing that are inseparable from Indigenous communities, wholistic in nature, connected to place and dependent on lived experiences gained over lifetimes. Students will research and become familiar with a diversity of protocols and practices toward having and maintaining political integrity by activating wise approaches to economic development, ecotourism, environmentalism and a diversity of practices as covered in the course readings, lectures, and video presentations. To honor the central tenets of Indigenous Knowledges (IKs), students will design and submit individual research projects that demonstrate how they can/will mobilize IKs in their current programs of study, work or personal lives in meaningful and respectful ways. Students are expected to come prepared (having completed assigned readings and assignments) for all seminars and to participate in class discussions and activities on a weekly basis. A central feature of Indigenous Knowledge Systems is Tákem Nsnuknukwa7, all my relations, so students are also expected to work together and support each other’s success.


- learn from First Peoples' protocols and practices on a diversity of subject areas
- develop an understanding of how/when/which protocols and practices are appropriate to take up
- attain experiential understandings of respectful mobilization of protocols, practices (wise approaches) in student's learning and/or everday life on Indigenous lands
- experience the benefits of participating in collaborative learning and supporting the success of the collective


  • Small group project- Metaphor Making 10%
  • 4 Quizzes x 15% 60%
  • IK Mobilization Project Submission 30%
  • No final exam


To honor the central tenets of Úcwalmicw knowledge systems, NO technology is permitted during seminars/lectures and only when required during small group activities facilitated during class time.Video or audio recorded lecture slides will be posted in canvas for asynchronous viewing prior to class meetings.

Students are expected to work together and support each other as an essential component of being in relation to Úcwalmicw knowledge seeking, making, sharing systems.



All assigned readings are available online through CANVAS- and/or provided/presented in class.


Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at: shop.sfu.ca/course-materials/my-personalized-course-materials.

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website 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