I really enjoyed the course! So much I didn't know about the history. I also didn't have a true understanding why there is so much discourse between Indigenous people and government. Total eye opener.
Very well done! Thank you for allowing me to learn more about your history & culture. Being from Ireland and relatively new to Canada I wanted to know more about the beginnings of Canada as a country.
by Cindy L•
This was a wonderful course in that it was an honest look at the history of indigenous experiences. What I was really hoping for was a more in depth look at how indigenous and settlers coming west truly interacted with each other on a more personal level. Unfortunately there exists the "us" bs " them" mentality and until that goes we will always have this discourse. I was very happy to see the inclusion of the struggle of indigenous woman who married non-indigenous. I have two uncles who married indigenous woman when they came back from WW2. And the abuse and discrimination WE ALL faced because of that was staggering. And it came from both indigenous and non-indigenous. For people not well versed in history this course will be outstanding for them in that it will present an honest and compelling look into a part of this country's beginning. Thank you faculty for a wonderful and pleasurable journey!!
by Adrienne A•
I am so thankful to have heard about this course before it started and to have had the opportunity to learn alongside everyone. The Sunday live chats with Dan, the faculty members and guests were so inspiring and eye opening. I really appreciated being able to dive deeper into the content of the course through these conversations. I grew up in Winnipeg and was embarrassed at how little I knew about indigenous history and culture after living so long amongst the largest indigenous urban population in the country. I am beyond thankful for this opportunity to learn about things that I feel we should’ve learned in grade school. This has kickstarted my learning journey and I will definitely be pursuing more knowledge about our indigenous history and culture which helps me to better understand current events and enables me to be a better ally.thank you to everyone who helped bring this course to so many!
by Alejandra G•
Indigenous Canada has been a wonderful journey of relearning and expanding the knowledge of First Nations, Inuit and Metis peoples. I am grateful for the facilitators, they do a great job relating a shameful and painful history and they come alive engaging and provoking the learners when it comes to relate the history of resistance and resilience, the beauty, and the hope that Indigenous ways of seen the world have to offer. Today, that message is even more powerful as we need to look for alternative and better ways to be in this world. I wish I could take a part II of this amazing course, with humbleness I will endeavor to continue the personal journey; making sure my children get educated from Indigenous Canada's perspective, and incorporating the learnings and looking for ways to reciprocate and speak up against racism and oppression against Indigenous people everywhere I can. Thank you!
by Steve S•
This course should be mandatory for every high school student in Canada... pass it, or no diploma. Of course, for those of us long past our high school years, it should be a priority for all of us to immerse ourselves. New Canadians should also be required complete the course. How can we understand Canada without understanding the indigenous story, and the colonial past as it has been carried into the present? I was intrigued by so much of the information, angered by what was has been done to the indigenous people, and I now have a much more profound understanding of the issues still with us today, and still to be resolved, and each of our responsibility to do so.
I also learned how extraordinary and diverse the indigenous peoples are in Canada. It's most certainly time to finally live together as equals.
Thank-you for an exceptional experience, and making it freely available to all.
by Terrena P•
The recent discoveries of unmarked graves at the sites of former residential schools compelled me to learn more about the strifes of the Indigenous peoples of Canada. Their trials and tribulations and the theft of not only their land but their way of life, language and culture was extremely eye opening to me. My husband and son are both of Mi'kmaq descent and I have learned recently that I may be of Metis descent, but even without those Indigenous connections, I feel an empathy with all Indigenous people and the hardships they endured and continue to endure today. I stand with all Indigenous people and hope to see one day that they are given the proper respect and return of all that was taken from them. This course is one all Canadians should take to truly understand the past and how it has affected the present and will continue to affect the future for generations to come. Wela'lin
by Catherine K•
The course was in-depth and challenging. There were many facts, concepts, and histories which were complex, interrelated, and ongoing. Many subjects I only knew about superficially. These were described thoroughly and in a way which Helped me acknowledge that there is much I still need to learn about Indigenous Canadian people’s, their heritage and histories, and the ongoing colonization experience. It was especially helpful to hear about the Land and the Indigenous connection to it. It is a far more intricate connection then my own thoughts, and history with, “land”. I was pleasantly surprised to see a reference to “Mariano Aupilarjuk”. I have worked with his grandson (In Nunavut) and recently sent him a USB with over 40 drum dance songs on it. I am hoping the voice of his grandfather is on one of the songs. The songs were shared with me by a traditional singer in another NU community.
by Tracey A•
I very much appreciate being able to take this course. I learned a lot and am excited to learn more. I really enjoyed hearing from the speakers that you brought in to break down particular topics. I also appreciated the way the course was broken down into 'bite-sized' videos, none of which were too long. I also liked that you could rewrite the exam if needed. I had origionally planned on giving 4 out of 5 starts but reallly couldn't thing of a reason to take a star away so I decided to give 5 out of 5. The only thing I can think of that I sometimes found frustrating is that on my iPad I wasn't able to rewind the video or fast forward. I'm not sure if this was my device or something disabled on your end but this feature would have been helpful. The course was very well done, I learned a lot and I look forward to taking another course to further my knowledge in this area. Thank you!
by Mathieu L•
Despite not being Canadian nor even from Turtle Island, I have always been interested in (appalled by ?) the situation of the indigenous peoples of northern America. Living in Europe, I have had access to a copious and varied amount of information and books about indigenous peoples of the USA, but very little is available in France about Canada, which is shocking , considering that the French were once the main colonial force in the continent. I heard about this course through Canadian writer/actor Daniel levy, and I have been absolutely thrilled by it. It's rich, easy to access despite the difficulties of english as a second language, and informative. I've had a whale of a time studying Indigenous Canada with coursera, and I hope to continue this process of educating myself on these fundamental issues, that affect us all worldwide. Thank you for this terrific opportunity
by Elizabeth B•
This course provided an excellent overview of Indigenous history, culture, people and land. It explored a number of topics in depth, and did not shy away from explaining how settlers tried to eradicate many elements of Indigenous culture. The module on residential schools was particularly difficult to go through, but extremely important to be aware of. In every module I learned something new (often many things) and feel I have a greater understanding of the concepts and issues than I did before taking this course. I think this should be a mandatory course that every Canadian takes. Our Canadian educational curriculum does not cover even a fraction of what was presented during this course, and presents a very one-sided view of Indigenous Canada; this course rectifies that and brings light to many important parts of history that has been swept under the rug for too long.
by Sukhjit S•
This course was an eye-opener. I am so glad that a social media link directed me to the link and I ended up enrolling in this course. While I was studying the chapters, watching the videos, and finishing my final quiz for each chapter, I felt that this course should be mandated for every Canadian. Most importantly, this course should be part of the Canadian Citizenship Test. Most of us who chose to live in this beautiful country would not be knowing the real history of Canada without such courses. It is very limited availability on this subject matter. The way this course was planned and delivered, was an incredible experience for me. Today, I finished the course and really feeling proud to know a little bit more about Canadian history and the lives of those who were originally the owners of this wonderful land. Thank you to those who made this course so engaging.
by Brenda W•
I am so grateful for this course. I believe it to be very important for all Canadians to know our history and relationships with our Indigenous "Relatives." The material is disturbing on so many levels and the truth hurts. I realize that the information provided is only the tip of the iceberg, but it certainly provides a framework to participate in ongoing truth and reconcilliation work with a deeper understanding of the experiences and consequences of the colonization of our First Nations people. I am grateful to others who encouraged participation in this program, most notably Dan Levy, along with others from within my Truth and Reconciliation circle. Thank you to the UofA, the scholars, speakers, and participants for their contribution. I will do my part to spread the word regarding this valuable work. It has been a privilege...blessings to all of you!
by Karl P•
This course was enlightening. Each module was fascinating, informative and it opened up not only my eyes but my mind. I now have a whole different perspective on what I thought was our Canadian history. I can definitely state the education I received both in high school and post secondary did not reveal the whole picture on the many important events, happenings, and special moments that shaped our Canadian history as this course did. I am appalled at the treatment received by Aboriginal peoples at the hands of the First Settlers and the continuation of this mistreatment even to the present day. I have a brand new outlook and I will incorporate this new knowledge into my everyday life. Thank you for the great work that went into the development of this course. I hope many more will partake in this course and develop a better understanding of our history.
by Roland K•
This was a very enlightening course. I already knew some - not all - of the history, but little of the cultural background. One of my favourite modules was the last one, about Indigenous art. I previously knew so little about today's Indigenous artists! My only criticism - a mild one - is that insofar as the course deals with colonial powers that have interacted with Indigenous people, the focus is almost exclusively on England rather than France (and where French names occur in the videos, they are often mispronounced). Some of the relevant history is not understandable without a bit more emphasis on the "French fact" - which played a crucial role, for instance, in the genesis of the Métis people. If the course is ever updated, I suggest that an extra module be added to cover this aspect - ideally, with the involvement of a francophone Indigenous historian.
by Katie W•
From the worldview lesson at the outset to the powerful lesson on Indigenous Canadian art at the close, this course informed and surprised. It was difficult to learn the history, and infuriating to realize I grew up being told a skewed colonial story. In particular, the chapters on urban Indigenous communities and Indigenous women broadened my understanding of the pervasiveness and danger of stereotypes and patriarchal practices. Thank you to Dr. Bear, the presenters, and all who worked to assemble and present this course.
I have a single suggestion for improvement. I liked the music used as background for many of the videos, but it never changed. One track in particular consisted of two alternating pitches and a repetitive drumbeat. It was extraordinarily distracting, and I could find no way to silence the background music and listen to the lecturer alone.
by Donnalu C•
How different would our Canada, our world, be if instead of trying to assimilate the indigenous peoples we had explored, embraced and adopted their view on Mother Earth and our relationship to our land and to community? I personally find in current times, many of us so unsatisfied, so disillusioned with hectic schedules and constant stress when really we are just completely disconnected from Mother Nature and respect for our environment and each other. This course amplifies the price, the darkness of colonization, capitalism and total disregard for what should be sacred. Too much has been lost, too many lives lost in horrific ways and Canadians need to recognise this truth and hope the Indigenous ways can still help save us all. Thank you to Tracy Bear, her team and Leah Dorion for educating us with skill, knowledge, honesty, strength and sensitivity.
by christopher l b•
Thanks to the presenters and Dr Paul Garneau for providing this course! It's been 40 years since I was in University, and there was a bit a learning curve with the online aspect of it, but I got through that.
What a pleasure it has been! To learn so much so quickly was so satisfying and useful.
Parenthetically, it was Dee Brown's book in 1970 (Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee) that got me interested in the subject of the people who lived here long before colonization by the Europeans. He said early on in the book that we should look EAST, not WEST when examining how Indigenous peoples reacted to this fundamental event.
Although that book taught me a lot, this course taught me more, most especially about the specific experiences of Indigenous people, and their nature in this land.
Congratulations on a job well-done. You've made me a better man...
by Robert J L•
I found the course to be an excellent beginning to understanding the Indigenous issues in Canada. I grew up in Port Arthur during the 40's and 50's. I knew, vaguely, about the Reserves around Fort William and Lake Nipigon, but I don't think I ever met or interacted with an Indigenous person.
Not once in those years was I ever exposed to information that would help me appreciate the people on reserves, or the issues that lead to how they arrived there. I hope that some of that mistake are being better addressed now in our schools.
When I worked as a teacher in North Bay, I had Indigenous students in a few of my classes, most from the North Bay and a few from the North. Most were excellent people, One became a prominent lawyer in the Maritimes. The very few that were "problems" where problems because of their personalities and actions, not their indigeneity.
by Gabrielle D•
In June 2017, I was extermely lucky to visit Mashteuiatsh, a First Nations reserve in the Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean region of Quebec, Canada. It was a life-changing experience and upon my return to San Francisco, CA I came across this course. I really wanted to understand more and this course has met my expectations beyond my wildest dreams. It's very well done, both intellectually challenging and emotionally powerful. I look forward every week to the new content. I would recommend it to anybody who lives in the Americas and like me is Caucasian and "had no idea". There is another reason why I really enjoy this course : I have been many times to Canada and some of my best friends are Canadians. This course is an excellent introduction to the history of their country. As a conclusion, this is one of the most interesting classes I have ever taken on line.
by Franco P•
I thoroughly enjoyed the course becasue it allowed me to learn on my own, without intereference from some micro-managing "thought-leader" who does not know more than I do and is only looking to fill in some boxes for her bogus doctorate in education. I absolutely loved the multiple choice tests at the end of each module. Most of all, I am grateful for the opportunity to learn from Indigenous peoples, who provided concrete lectures and readings for further study. This has not been the case at my school board, and it speaks volumes when you are being asked to teach about Indigenous people and your emplpyer does not provide a pre-approved list of books, films, and myriad other resources -- something this course does beautifully. This course has helped to put me on the right path, and I will defintely be recommending this to my bewildered colleagues.
by Janet S•
The course, "Indigenous Canada," offered to me an awareness of the dignity of the First Nations peoples. Living in Hawaii I realize many parallels between the Canadian Indigenous history and culture to the aboriginal Hawaiians. Also I connected to my ancestry as a Flanders who ancestress was Jane Flanders. The book, "The Flanders Family From Europe to America" by Edith Flanders Dunbar states Jane was an Indian woman who belonged to the Sandusky Tribe. She was taken into court for using vile words to colonial Puritans. The topics that Dr. Bear and Dr. Gareau included gave perspectives from historical indigenous Canada to modern day indigenous Canada. Leah Dorion's beautiful artwork was a perfect complement in telling this story. Listening to Leah explain the topics in the painting was a true joy. Thank you to all involved in presenting this course.
by Edward B•
As a 68 y/o white male from the U. S., this course was eye opening and very educational. While the course focused on Canada and the Indigenous/First Nation issues, I felt it also mirrored the struggles and unfairness that First Nation Peoples in the U. S. face and still face today. I'm new, sad to say, to the conversation about injustice within the Indigenous Peoples community. I was taken that the art that is beautifully presented at the end of each module included, as a point of leadership, nearly all male figures because I learned that it was women that decided much of Indigenous life and are particularly important now in 2020 as we forge ahead both in Canada and the U. S. I was hoping to see women portrayed in art in a more positive, more forward-leaning place in the depiction of Indigenous future. Thanks for an outstanding course!
by Dave D•
This course is a start to educating and presenting a better understanding of what the Indeginous communities, it's history, it's values and movement is about. For this course to be effective on an educational stand point of view it will need to continue to offer the more courses on these lines to be effecive so that the 400,000 people that enrolled can can continue to learn and be educated of Indigenous communites. You have a good platform you need to reach a bigger audience.
Education is the key. Funding to offer these courses (free) is the other key.
I have an understanding of the plight of the Indigenous people and the effects of colonization. i would like to understand more of the present day roles, workings of self governace of Indigenous communities.
Thank you for your time. The presentation was great. Dave Delaney 506-349-4723
by Brenda N•
I learned a lot from this course. I thought it was presented very well- organized, methodical in it approach with a balanced view. I had taken a aboriginal womens studies course at Athabasca University this past year so was familiar with the powerful and engaged group of women who got together to fight the inequities in the Indian Act. These women are heroes- SHEroes. I did feel that there wasn't enough information on the Sixties Scoop or any real reference to the term, which may be for a reason, but felt it should be hightlighted to people understand the history of abuse to those families. I thought all the presenters did a wonderful job, telling their parts and were all compelling and engaging. I would love to do another one- that drilled down even further. Thank you for making this course available to us. Thank you Brenda Norfolk
by Robert B•
This is the second course I have taken on my journey to understand a part of my own history of which I was completely unware until the death of my mother. I was 28 years old and at the reception after her funeral, I was made aware that not only my maternal grandmother but my paternal grandmother both had Mig 'Maw heritage (at that time the term used was Mic Mac). I am embarrassed that I never followed up on it as I simply thought of it as part of my history and got on with life. More recent work on T&R has made me want to know more and while I am pretty sure that my mother and father were sheltered from any racism (I don't think others knew they had Indigenous blood) I wonder at what point my ancestors were subjected to it. This course has been exceptional in giving me a bit of background and I intend to seek more information.
by Pamela B•
I really loved this class. I grew up in ND and currently live in Minnesota, so my knowledge of Indigenous people in Canada was quite limited. I have Indigenous friends in Saskatchewan and the class helped me to understand some of their families' history and converse with them about a variety of issues. The course instructors were very knowledgeable and professional, and the topics were easy to follow and engaging. There was a great deal of history and wide range of topics covered in the 12 lessons. The class has inspired me to continue to learn more about Indigenous people in North America and follow the politics and issues more closely. I appreciate having the opportunity to take this free online class, and will explore other Coursera classes that are available. Thank you and I wish you all the best in future endeavors!!