Summer 2023 - EDUC 100W D200

Selected Questions and Issues in Education (3)

Class Number: 4399

Delivery Method: In Person


  • Course Times + Location:

    May 8 – Aug 4, 2023: Thu, 2:30–5:20 p.m.



An introduction to a small but representative sample of basic questions and issues in education. Students will examine questions relating to: the concept or idea of education; learning and the learner; teaching and the teacher; and more generally, the broader contexts of education. This course also introduces students to different ways of exploring educational questions and issues from philosophical and critical analysis, to historical and cross-cultural studies, to empirical research. Cannot be taken for credit by students with credit for 300 and 400 level education courses. Writing/Breadth-Humanities.


The course will ask you to think broadly about education, but particularly focus on the relationship of education to our existence as humans and the meaning of life. This broadly existential approach will be further articulated through addressing the ways that Indigenous, decolonial and ecological issues and perspectives are framed within the field.  This focus will be pursued through a lens of critical and reflective inquiry and will be explored predominately through the process of writing and hosting student-directed seminars. 


  1. Inquire into the implications of Indigeneity and ecology and climate change for learning and learners as well as teaching and teachers.
  2. Examine previous and current biases, assumptions, and values in relation to Indigeneity and ecology (climate-change) in Canadian society and educational contexts.
  3. Appreciate and explain the aims and goals of including Indigenous worldviews in Canadian educational contexts and how these differ from Western traditions.
  4. Appreciate and explain the aims and goals of including more-than human perspectives and worldviews in educational contexts and how these differ from anthropocentric educational traditions.
  5. Develop awareness and knowledge about historical and contemporary ecological and issues that surround education.
  6. Synthesize information from diverse sources to describe an orientation, clarifying values and convictions.
  7. Use both critical and reflexive writing as practices to understand course concepts, oneself, and others.
  8. Engage in meaningful and respectful conversation on complex and sensitive topics


  • First Seminar Response Reflection 20%
  • Seminar Response Portfolio 60%
  • Seminar Facilitation & Engagement 20%



It is expected that you own a copy of the following book. You can find them at the in some commercial bookstores, and on some online retailers for books. You may also be able to access snippets of the text through the SFU Library. It is recommended that you purchase a copy of the text in the first week.

Davidson, S. F. & Davidson, R. (2018). Potlach as pedagogy: Learning as ceremony. Portage & Main Press.


Other required readings for EDUC 100 will include a combination of journal articles and book chapters that have been selected to support the aims of this course. These journal articles can be downloaded each week from Canvas.

e-book: 9781553797746


Your personalized Course Material list, including digital and physical textbooks, are available through the SFU Bookstore website by simply entering your Computing ID at:

Registrar Notes:


SFU’s Academic Integrity website 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.


Students with a faith background who may need accommodations during the semester are encouraged to assess their needs as soon as possible and review the Multifaith religious accommodations website. The page outlines ways they begin working toward an accommodation and ensure solutions can be reached in a timely fashion.