ERIC Number: EJ934565
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Sep
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 30
An Indigenous Knowledges Perspective on Valid Meaning Making: A Commentary on Research with the EDI and Aboriginal Communities
Sam, Michele A.
Social Indicators Research, v103 n2 p315-325 Sep 2011
Offering an Indigenous perspective, this commentary discusses collaborative research, shared meaning making, and knowledge building specific to child development, and reflects on social, cultural, and historical aspects that influence these processes. Drawing upon experiences of developing a collaborative research approach with which to engage Aboriginal communities to appreciate, understand, and potentially use the Early Development Instrument (EDI; Janus and Offord in "Can J Behav Sci" 39:1-22, 2007), a teacher-administered rating scale on kindergarten children's development, the commentary focuses on five key questions relevant to research processes undertaken with Indigenous Peoples, and the importance of social, ethical, and cultural aspects of validity: How do Indigenous epistemologies and knowledges inform and influence research processes that utilize the EDI as a measurement tool? How can the EDI be used as a measurement tool within a research process that fosters the thriving of children and their families in Aboriginal communities while promoting Indigenous Peoples' self-determination? In what ways do local, Indigenous cultural and ethical considerations inform aspects of validation research pertaining to the EDI? How can (Western mainstream) universities build research capacity that is informed by Indigenous knowledges and ways of being, doing, and knowing? What are the potential consequences of using normative research tools--such as the EDI--as a method to build knowledge on children's development with Indigenous Peoples and Aboriginal communities? This commentary suggests that from an Indigenous perspective, research on child development is valid and meaningful knowledge if it is clearly linked to the children's and families' wellbeing according to local cultural norms and values.
Descriptors: Research Tools, Indigenous Populations, Research Methodology, Rating Scales, Kindergarten, Ethics, Child Development, Teaching Methods, Social Indicators, Cooperation, Indigenous Knowledge, Measures (Individuals), Self Determination, Values
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A