ERIC Number: EJ759918
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Field-Based Education and Indigenous knowledge: Essential Components of Geoscience Education for Native American Communities
Riggs, Eric M.
Science Education, v89 n2 p296-313 Mar 2005
The purpose of this study is to propose a framework drawing on theoretical and empirical science education research that explains the common prominent field-based components of the handful of persistent and successful Earth science education programs designed for indigenous communities in North America. These programs are primarily designed for adult learners, either in a postsecondary or in a technical education setting and all include active collaboration between local indigenous communities and geoscientists from nearby universities. Successful Earth science curricula for indigenous learners share in common an explicit emphasis on outdoor education, a place and problem-based structure, and the explicit inclusion of traditional indigenous knowledge in the instruction. Programs sharing this basic design have proven successful and popular for a wide range of indigenous cultures across North America. We present an analysis of common field-based elements to yield insight into indigenous Earth science education. We provide an explanation for the success of this design based in research on field-based learning, Native American learning styles research, and theoretical and empirical research into the nature and structure of indigenous knowledge. We also provide future research directions that can test and further refine our understanding of best practices in indigenous Earth science education.
Descriptors: Technical Education, Outdoor Education, Indigenous Knowledge, Earth Science, Adult Students, Adult Learning, Adult Basic Education, Science Education, Field Experience Programs, Postsecondary Education, School Community Relationship, Culturally Relevant Education, American Indian Education, Cognitive Style
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Adult Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: North America