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ERIC Number: EJ1132870
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0018-1609
Rocking the Foundations: The Struggle for Effective Indigenous Studies in Australian Higher Education
Aberdeen, Lucinda; Carter, Jennifer; Grogan, Justine; Hollinsworth, David
Higher Education Review, v45 n3 p36-55 Sum 2013
Foundation courses that provide knowledge and understanding about the social, cultural and historical factors shaping Indigenous Australians' lives since colonial settlement and their effects are endorsed in Australian higher education policy. Literature highlights the complexity of changing student views and the need for sustained, comprehensive approaches to teaching foundation content. This paper analyses one such course in its capacity to increase knowledge and understanding, and promote positive attitudes, particularly amongst non-Indigenous students. It finds significant shifts in views and knowledge gained from studying the foundation course, and a change in commitment to social justice and reconciliation for Indigenous Australians. Students also significantly changed their view as to whether all Australians should understand this material. Despite these gains, our experiences indicate that foundational courses can be eroded through institutional processes. We argue this suggests the persistence of pervasive and subtle institutional racisms, in the context of global commodification of higher education.
Tyrrell Burgess Associates. 34 Sandilands, Croydon, CRO 5DB, UK. Tel: +44-2086-561770; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A