Land-Based Indigenous Cohort

Follow along with the U of S's Indigenous Land-based cohort as they complete their last two courses of the Integrated Master's Program.

The next intake will be for the Summer of 2016.  Watch this space for updates.

This Master of Education course based graduate program offers intensive land-based institutes where students take graduate level courses framed within an Indigenous paradigm and taught primarily by Indigenous faculty. The Land-Based Indigenous Education cohort supports and accommodates students who are unable to commit to long periods of study away from home. Students are required to live on-site for the duration of institutes (2 weeks each) so that contact hours with faculty, Indigenous communities and the land are maximized. Study occurs through four institutes (8 courses) at the Opaskwayak Cree Nation, Manitoba, summer 2013; Hawaii January 2014; Xwisten First Nation summer 2014; and TBD for summer 2015. Two online courses supplement graduate course work.

Course Offerings

Please see list below for the University Orientation and ten 3 credit unit courses currently planned. The department may need to make changes as the cohort proceeds. Instruction will be provided by department faculty and from others with expertise in land-based indigenous education. The Department of Educational Foundations has five Indigenous faculty on site: Marie Battiste, Verna St. Denis, Alex Wilson, Karla Jessen Williamson, and Margaret Kovach and has relationships with faculty from other institutions and with Indigenous communities.

Student Costs

University set tuition costs apply. Off-campus institutes have additional program fees to cover site accommodation, meals, venue and activity costs. These costs are $1,720.00 for Summer 2013, $2,655.00 for the International Study Tour and $1,750.00 for Summer 2014.  The fee for Summer 2015 will be confirmed whtn the venue is finalized (projected to be $1,650.00 - $1,800.00)

Course Offerings and Schedule
Monday July 8 and Tuesday July 9, 2013:
Orientation to Graduate Studies at the University of Saskatchewan
  • EFDT 990.0 This is a non-credit required seminar. Students are familiarized with graduate level work, department expectations, university and other resources.
  • GSR 960.0 Is a required on-line course for all first year graduate students at the University of Saskatchewan. The purpose of this course is to discuss ethical issues that graduate students may face during their time at the University. All students will complete modules dealing with integrity and scholarship, graduate student-supervisor relationships, conflict of interest, conflict resolution and intellectual property and credit.
Summer Institute 2013 July to 10-21
Location: Opaskwayak Cree Nation (OCN)

  * A program fee of $1,720.00 will cover site accommodation, meals, venue and activity costs.

  • EFDT 817.3 - Trends and Issues in Continuing Education:  Introduction to Learning from the Land. (Instructor: Dr. Alex Wilson) This course provides an introduction, overview, and exploration of Indigenous Knowledge in the context of land-based Education. Using an experiential approach and incorporating outdoor locations as the primary classroom site, the course offers students an opportunity to understand the foundational significance of land/place in the formation of Indigenous knowledge systems, theory and educational practice.
  • ERES 800.3 - Research Methods Introductory (Instructor: TBD) This course is an introduction to research methods, with special reference to research in Education. Basic theory, principles and practices of research are discussed, to include quantitative, qualitative, and mixed method approaches. Skills necessary for both the production of research proposals and informed consumption of research are developed.
Fall 2013: Preparing for International Study Tour

  * A program fee of $2,655.00 will cover site accommodation in Hawaii, registration for an International Conference, some meals, venues and activities.

  • With EFDT 898: Indigenous Lands and Nourishment (Instructor: Dr. Karla Jessen Williamson) This course examines the reciprocal relationship between Indigenous peoples and their lands as it is expressed through Indigenous nourishment and assertion of sovereignty. The physical and spiritual nourishments of food are analyzed to understand the significant interaction between the individual and the communal well-being and the interconnections with language and cultural continuations. The foundational importance of food in re-envisioning Indigenous education is studied and promoted.
Winter 2014: Hawaii International Study Tour

The Hawaii Study tour will take place January 4-15, with the 4th and 15th being travel days, for a total of 11 nights in Hawaii.  The tour will include attendance at the Hawaii International Conference on Education in Honolulu from January 05-08.  For more information on the conference, see

Details re: your participation in the conference will be made available at this summer’s institute.  There is no need to submit a proposal before then. The tour will include attendance at the Hawaii International Conference on Education in Honolulu from January 05-08, 2014.  For more information on the conference, see

You are responsible for making your own flight arrangements to and from Honolulu, Hawaii.

  • EFDT 854.3 International Study Tour (Instructor: Dr. Alex Wilson) Pre-departure readings and seminars introduce students to the culture of the designated country and to the history and structure of its education system. Lectures, seminars, observation, and journals are used to develop an analysis of the relationships between cultural tradition, economic and political structures, and education.
Summer Institute 2014 July 7-18, July 6 and 19 are travel days.
Hosted by Xwísten First Nation, Lillooet, British Columbia

  * A program fee of $1,750.00 will cover site accommodation, meals, venue and activities.

  • EFDT 848 Resilience in Aboriginal Education (Instructor: Dr. Karla Jessen Williamson) Informed by narrative literature on gender, race, sexuality, class and disability, this course examines qualities, criticisms and theories of resilience as they relate to Aboriginal Education. Diverse First Nations, Métis and Inuit paradigms of resilience are examined to question hegemonic practices in education in relation to tensions, anxieties, and crucial turning points in the lives of individuals, families and communities.
  • EFDT 450 Aboriginal Epistemology and Pedagogy (Instructor TBD) This course features salient Aboriginal learning styles and teaching strategies which underpin the survival and resiliency of Aboriginal people. It provides an opportunity through seminar, collaborative investigations and critical exploration to analyse Aboriginal ways of knowing and an art of teaching respecting Aboriginal protocols and knowledge.
Fall 2014 Online Course:
  • EFDT 884 Life History as Education (Dr. Dianne Miller) Examines life history research and life history writing from feminist, critical race theory, critical pedagogy, and cultural studies perspectives in relation to educational inquiry. Through the study of memoir, autobiography, auto-ethnography, and contemporary fiction, the construction of identities in diverse social and political contexts is investigated.
Winter 2015 Online Course:
  • EFDT 870 Interdisciplinary Seminar in Foundations of Education (Dr. Dianne Miller) A consideration of important educational issues from the anthropological, comparative, historical, philosophical and sociological points of view and the possible implications for a comprehensive theory of education.

Summer Institute 2015 July 27- August 06 (July 27- July 30 Treaty Six land on-campus and July 31-August 06 Canoe trip on North Saskatchewan River).

  * A program fee of $1327.85 will be charged.

  • EFDT 844: Theory and Practice of Anti-Racist Education (Dr. Verna St. Denis): Examines the historical, economic and political processes and practices of racialization, and the ways in which these processes and their effects become entrenched in our social and educational institutions. Theories and practices of integrative anti-racist education will be explored, including its applications in a variety of workplaces.
  • EFDT 898: Land-based Indigenous Cohort Capstone Course (Dr. Alex Wilson): This capstone course is the culmination of your Integrated Master's Program Indigenous Land Based cohort. The purpose of the capstone is to provide an opportunity for you to synthesize the knowledge and experiences gained from your previous courses, land-based experiences, interviews, personal reflections and foundational Indigenous education theory.

How to Apply
To apply, submit your application online

A non-refundable application fee of $75.00 ($90.00 as of September 1, 2014) will be required when you submit your application. You may do this online with your application or you may request a credit card form that can be returned to our office.

  • Three confidential letters of recommendation must come direct from your references. This is part of the online application process;
  • A transcript of your university grades (not necessary if the grades are from U of S) from all post-secondary institutions you have attended must come directly to us from the postsecondary institution. In order to be accepted into the Integrated Master's your last 60 cus must have a cumulative weighted average of 70% or higher after a conversion calculation. A four year degree is required for admission.
  • Please mail or e-mail a letter of intent stating why you wish to study in the program and a resume of your study and work experience. In your letter of application, clearly explain why you are interested in the Land-Based Indigenous Education Cohort.Please see template for the letter of intent .
  • If you are an International Applicant, we may require additional items, please see:
Please send all application material to:

EFDT Graduate Office
Room 3360
College of Education
28 Campus Drive
Saskatoon, SK S7N 0X1

For application questions, or to send in your letter of intent and resume, please contact