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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Indigenous Canada by University of Alberta

20,914 ratings

About the Course

Indigenous Canada is a 12-lesson Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) from the Faculty of Native Studies that explores the different histories and contemporary perspectives of Indigenous peoples living in Canada. From an Indigenous perspective, this course explores complex experiences Indigenous peoples face today from a historical and critical perspective highlighting national and local Indigenous-settler relations. Topics for the 12 lessons include the fur trade and other exchange relationships, land claims and environmental impacts, legal systems and rights, political conflicts and alliances, Indigenous political activism, and contemporary Indigenous life, art and its expressions....

Top reviews


Jul 2, 2021

This course was very interesting and very informative. Not only did it help correct stereotypes or prejudices, it showed a wide range of subjects pertaining to global and specific Indigenous cultures.


Aug 30, 2020

This is a great survey course about Indigenous Canada. As a participant, I have learned and unlearned so much about Indigenous Canadians, and more important, this course has inspired me to learn more.

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226 - 250 of 7,366 Reviews for Indigenous Canada

By Diane S

Mar 17, 2022

This course is invaluable to my awareness of Indigenous history, the phases in Indigenous-European newcomer relationship, and the formation of Canada as a state. Concepts of world views and ways of knowing were new to me, and learning about the different views between Indigenous and European peoples early in the course gave context for the issues that inevitably arose in our mutual history. The progression from pre-contact, through the fur trade, treaty-making and government assimilation policy gave me an understanding of events in modern times - resistance, land claims, contesting & winning changes to questionable, often inhumane policy - holding the Canadian government accountable. We are now living a new phase of Indigenous-Settler relationship: mass awareness of the Truth, and reconciling; advocating for & implementing Indigenous self-government, ways of education, art, healing, technology and addressing climate change.

The course is well structured over 12 weeks to make the complex material accessible & manageable. The videos are a good length - bite-size yet substantial - and the added interviews give voice & perspective to the content. In particular, Kim Tallbear's commentary on feminist democratic science was stunningly eye-opening for me. It is enlightenment to realize that science as we know it could have the built-in bias of white western men. Leah Dorion's special art project is a moving addition, giving a creative mode of learning through symbolic imagery & story to the weekly lessons. There were many good resources for further inquiry into subject areas presented. Excellent program overall! I firmly believe that this course should be mandatory study in Canadian schools.

Miigwetch! Thank you!

By Laurence H V

Jul 23, 2021

I very much enjoyed this course. It provided me with an expanded perspective and a new lens for which me to look through at indigenous communities of Canada. This course has provide me with a base knowledge and insight into indigenous ways and laid the foundation for building blocks on an ever icreasing journey of knowledge about indigenous culture, history, art, believes, governence, gender and more. I learned things i didn't know, or where not taught, about the ways indegenous communities where treated because of colonialsm, by both church and state, and the resilancy of indegenous communties through unimaginable atrocities. It challenged my whiteness, my prespective and my own colonialist education. Changing the way I view, what I believe and how i see the impacts of what white settler colonialism has had and is still having on indigenous communities across Canada. How the indigenous communities of Canada have struggled, are struggling and continue to struggle against white settler colonialism and its systemic damaging effects to women, youth and the purposeful distruction of cultural identity in trying to "remove the indian" from indegenous communities via residential schools, the Indian Act and "lawful" means.

Thank you as well to all the facilitator, educators, story tellers and anybody who contributed to this immensely rich educational program. I very much appreciate the opportunity to watch, listen and follow along as I learned. Very much engaging a broad spectrum of educational inclusive tactics to engage a broad soectrum of learner needs, styles and mechanisms. I am grateful f

Amazingly well done

By Karen K

Oct 5, 2021

Very informative. I have been trying to learn about the Indigenous ways of knowing and being - especially to do with the Justice system and the environment. I wish that Western society would wake up and understand that if we changed our philosophy of life to be more in tune with yours, a lot of our problems would disappear, and Mother Earth and all her inhabitants would be much better off.

I did know about the residential schools and their impacts quite a long time ago, ironically through a TV show on CBC called North of 60 which came out about 1990. It had a lot of amazing indigenous actors, and many of the characters had been to residential school and of course were still suffering from its impacts, and those of the Indian Act. I took a course in Indigenous Studies at university in the late 1970's. I remember learning about the White Paper, and for some reason thought it was a good thing. It was enlightening to see it through Indigenous eyes.

I am so glad that I took this course. It was recommended on CBC radio, and apparently also by Daniel Levy! My next goal in my learning is to read the Calls to Action from the TRC and to listen again to Roseanna Dearchild's interview of Murray Sinclair on CBC radio where he gives a great summary of what we can do to help make reconciliation happen. I feel that I have begun - I am a Kindergarten teacher and we just celebrated Orange Shirt Day. I found I was much better prepared to talk about such a difficult subject, even with children of such a young age, because of your course.

Thanks again!!.

By Robert J S

Apr 19, 2022

I found this course very instructive in providing me with a better understanding of Canada's complicated and often shameful history with Indigneous Peoples. Previously, I had some knowledge of the atrocities committed by colonialists and our government against Indigenous Peoples but this course enlightened me even further to the extent and nature of theses atcrocities. It is a dark history and I hope Canada takes more steps to repair the relationship and make restitution.

At the same time, the course gave me an appreciation, respect and sense of awe at the elaborate, intricate and knowledgable world views and cultural richness of Indigenous Peoples in what we now call Canada. I found a kinship with many of the Idigenous world views and life philosphies. I feel that in addresseing our current crises such as climate change, enviromental destruction, racism and many social issues, Canada and the world could benefit from the inclusion of Indigenous Peoples, their perspectives and their knowledge.

I also enjoyed seeing all the beatiful peieces of art created by indigenous artists and the stories behind the art. I encourage all Canadian, Idigenous and non-Indigenous, to enroll in the course. Knowledge and education is always worthwhile and make us better individuals, neighbours, and citizens. I know I am a better person for having taken the course.

My thanks to the the University of Alberta and all the course presenters, staffers, technicians and others who had a hand in this course. Well done!

By Robert L

Nov 28, 2022

I really want to thank the University of Alberta and everyone involved in developing and delivering this course. I truly enjoyed every module and learned so much about some of the history and various experiences of Indigenous People of Canada. As a Polish/French Canadian born in Toronto in the late 1960's we truthfully never learned any of this in our history books during my time in grade and/or high school. During my university days in the late 1980's/90's, I was lucky to have some professors who did introduce me to some books which did help open my eyes to how poorly Indigenous People were treated in Canada. Having said that though, my knowledge was still pretty limited. Travelling and living in New Zealand for 10 years from 2006-2015 really opened my eyes to how poorly the Maori were treated in NZ and that is where I started to do more reading on my own to discover the horrible history in my own country of Canada. Coming back to Canada to work at the City of Edmonton has helped me to continue this journey as the City provided a number of opportunities for me to learn more. One of those opportunities was this amazing course. As I mentioned right at the beginning, I am so happy to have taken this course and I look forward to working with my Indigenous colleagues here at the City to help make Edmonton a more inclusive city for all of its residents; including its Indigenous People. Kindest regards, Robert Lipka - Principal Urban Designer -

By Adina L

Aug 15, 2021

Fabulous course! It's eye opening to hear the history of indigenous people from indigenous people......the differences in values- collective rights and wellness vs individual rights in European, the difference between the holistic views of the indigenous peoples and of interrelationship between people land, animals and spirits and the material, power and money perspective of the colonizers.......they couldn't have understood one another from the get wasn't just a question of language.....they were coming from totally different worlds, values, systems of organizing, ways of being, beliefs, traditions ..., And yet from the time colonizers showed upon this soil indigenous people helped them - find food, dress, survive in this climate ..showing a more caring, sharing way of being and wisdom that is so badly needed these days in 2021, we have a new Indigenous GG, a new Female head of the indigenous First Nations Council in Ottawa and hopefully the wisdom and leadership of these indigenous leaders as well as other indigenous leaders speaking across the country about the path of the "Truth and Reconciliation" journey led by indigenous peoples and their allies will usher in a new era of interdependence, sharing and caring which is much needed in Canadian society today.

By Darlene S

Jul 25, 2021

I simply cannot tell you how greatful I am to have taken this instruction. I now know that the information exisits and I just didn't know what I didn't know. I highly recommend that this become part of the high school cirric. across Canada.

Thank you to the instructors and the artist of engaging my learning in a subject that I knew next to nothing about and I consider myself a more educated allie to the indigenous community. I have a lot more learnin to do, more of a mind to open and the responsibility to speak with purpose to those that simply do not have the understand, knowledge or open mind and heart about the horrific history of past, and present. Changing the future in in my mind, in my heart and that is what I can offer now and forever. Seeking the knowldege feels like I am digging up history and that should not be. It is so hidden in this colonized world. I appreciate the resourses that I have been guided to use in my further education.

I am not pleased with my mark as it means that I made mistakes understanding and that cannot happen going forward. Being an adult student in a busy house is NO excuse at all.

Knowledge is Power. Heart and Mind open,

Darlene Anne Spray

By Darin J A

Sep 12, 2021

I already came to this course with an idea of the many dark effects that colonization has had on the Indigenous peoples of Turtle Island, but I have learned so much more. I think all Canadians should take the opportunity to learn this history. As a 6th generation Canadian with British and European ancestry, I don't know what part any of my ancestors might have played in the negative impacts on Indigenous peoples, but I do not assume that they did not. My next step is to familiar myself with the action items of the Truth and Reconciliation Commision to see how I can help all of us move closer to reconciliation...we still have a long way to go. As a music promoter/former festival programmer, I have had the honour of presenting Buffy Sainte Marie, Susan Aglukark, Elisapie, Digging Roots, Amanda Rheaume, and many other contemporary Indigenous musicians. It was also important to include more traditional forms of singing, drumming and dancing in a summer festival that celebrates Canadian Music & Art. Chi miigwech to all at the U of Alberta who have made this course happen.

By Rickey H

Aug 31, 2021

This course is fundamental in my overall understanding of Indigenous history, and contemporary issues and lives of Indigenous people living in Canada. I am particularly overjoyed at the addition of the artwork segments to tie in topics in a sometimes lighthearted way. By providing interviews and transcripts of Indigenous people (Kim Tallbear for example) has allowed me to explore resources beyond this course offering. Often times I asked myself as a settler in Canada, what am I suppose to do with all of this information? Do I need to regurgitate facts to colleagues and family members for this to be effective? And I am sure many people ask themselves the same thing prior to taking this course. I would remind them that useful information doesn't always need to fit into a toolbelt, and that simply providing yourself with the awareness of the Indigenous experience in Canada is enough. I am thankful to all of the instructors and participants in this course, it has been a wonderful experience. I implore Coursera to retain this course for all Canadians, and beyond.

By Diane C

Sep 11, 2021

Thank you for preparing and presenting this course. I learned a lot and it opens doors to learning more about First Nations in Canada, and also the world.

I am from French descent, and have lived in Ontario nearly all my life. I always felt like a minority, as we were surrounded by English villages. But always proud of my culture and language.

Growing up on a farm, we did not live close to Indigenous peoples and sadly were only taught what was in the textbooks at school.

I sincerely enjoyed learning about the Indigenous cultures in this course, and absolutely love and admire your world views especially on your relationship to the land and water, and how you are stewards of the land. Also about education, and how you teach your young, and how each is to be responsible, and the value of the Elders and Knowledge keepers. We (Europeans descendants) have so much to learn from Indigenous peoples.

I hope and pray that reconciliation will continue moving forward, and that we can live in respect and harmony.


Diane Clément

By Elizabeth K

Dec 20, 2021

Very informative for me and I would guess a majority of Canadians who are not deeply involved in Indigenous experiences in a professional or personal capacity. Yes, there were lectures but the people speaking were all Indigenous and the interactive paintings were a unique, informative and enjoyable component. As a Canadian who is wanting to take action related to the Truth and Reconciliation Report, I highly vaue the information contained in the course. It is a beginning and provides many events and people whom I can further investigate. It has also motivated me to look around for what is happening in my own area. Many, many thanks to all of the people who pulled together this information and organized it in one accessible place. I highly recommend the course - no it is not perfect but it is certainly a welcome change to decades of my government silencing Indigenous voices and keeping most Canadians completely ignorant about Indigenous history in Canada and the appalling actions of government towards Indigenous people.


By Yvonne M D

Apr 8, 2021

I really enjoyed this course. I grew up in the Urban setting and was disconnected from my Native Roots, but always wanted to learn about this part of my heritage, even though it is a Canada program and I am an American, I felt at home, learning about the customs and tradition, I was never taught since my people passed as white and never practiced the old way of life, really helped me to understand more about my origins. I felt more connected to my heritage than I ever have, I just wish here in America was more like Canada, in how there is value in ones heritage in Canada, unlike here in America, where there is such a disconnect if you aren't living on the Res. The support outside the Res, like Neechi Commons, (Now Closed) friendship centers etc.... could really be beneficial in America, where there are Native Families who have never lived on a res and know so little about their culture, Great Program will recommend to anyone, even white folks, who seek a greater understanding of true history.

By Md. A H

Feb 28, 2023

I recently took the Indigenous Canada course offered by the University of Alberta through and found it to be an invaluable learning experience. The course is divided into 12 modules, each of which covers a different aspect of Indigenous history, culture, and contemporary issues. The lectures were informative and engaging, and the accompanying readings and videos were well-curated and provided further insight into the stories and topics discussed.

The course was also incredibly interactive, with quizzes and activities scattered throughout the modules. I found these to be incredibly helpful in reinforcing the learning material and I believe they are a great way to enhance the learning experience.

Overall, I highly recommend this course to anyone looking to gain a better understanding of Indigenous history, cultures, and contemporary issues. The course material is comprehensive, engaging, and interactive and provides a unique perspective that I believe everyone should be exposed to.

By Ellie W

Sep 25, 2022

This was a fantastic opportunity to learn the truth behind Canada's history and the many contemporary issues we have in society. I really appreciated the non-judgmental tone of the presenters and the content and how they present the facts. It helped me, as a learner to open my heart and mind to be receptive and consider the information laid out in each module. As a 55+ person, I did not learn about Canada from any other perspective than the colonial and patriarchal views of gov't officials, textbook publishers and newspaper/media outlets. I learned so much more from this course and I hope it's just the beginning of my journey to dig deeper and learn the truth. I am grateful to the dedicated team who designed and presented this course. Thank you. PS - The inclusion of the art component was brilliant! It invites vieweers to linger, and in turn can help people to connect and synthesize information. It also reinforces the message that First Nations art & culture are flourishing!

By Scott R

Jan 4, 2021

Really enjoyed this course. It explored a range of topics that I knew very little about, many of which should be included in basic school curriculums in Canada. I'm so happy to have gained a better understanding of indigenous people in Canada, both in historical context and contemporary issues. Thanks so much.

One perspective I felt could have been included in the course was the integral role of indigenous peoples in Canadian resource development and extraction. Despite many challenges, there have also been many success stories, particularly in the mining industry, in the form of collaboration agreements, aboriginal employment opportunities (often in isolated northern communities with high unemployment) and successful consultation/collaboration. Many mining projects have been beneficial to both indigenous communities and the Canadian economy as a whole, and I believe those success stories should be told as a "path forward" for all Canadians working in a resource-driven economy.

By Ryan B

Feb 10, 2021

This is and edit on my previous review (hopefully this is better) and pardon my terrible grammar .

I'm still a little late on this review in general since finishing this course. What do I say as someone who needed to learn more? I think I had to take it all in and truly think about it.

I thought because I had worked in a field where I worked with indigenous youth before that I had a decent idea about the dynamics of a culture that has been undermined. No I did not. I realized I had been ignorant at times. I think its something some people need to start acknowledging more about their privileged life. Many of us can be so much better.

Any "Canadian" should learn this course . Its so difficult to type anything about a whole course in a few sentences. If you're interested in learning and have an open mind.... which apparently is still needed... then take this course.

I'm going to be better, and I think we can all do that. Seems indigenous people knew that right from the start.

By Jan

May 1, 2020

I loved this course. I learned so much about Inidgenous history both past and recent and ongoing. I have a much better sense of the impact that colonialism had and is still having on Indigenous peoples . I also realize how my education in the Canadian education system is so onesideed so heavily influenced by colonialism . I know sadly that it has not changed very much ..This course should be a mandatory part of our current curriculum in schools across Canada,

I am so grateful for the all the participants in the lectures especially Billy Ray Belcourt , what a speaker!!!!!!!

I am so grateful for this clearer understanding of the Indigenous experience throughout Canadian history and what is still ongoing today. About Inidgenous Ar tI do have to say that I have always seen it as art. I have loved Inuit sculpture since I was a kid . I have read several Indigenous authors listened to Indigenous music just because, but I will understand more the place where it comes from within now.

By Lily A

Dec 9, 2021

This course is essential for all Canadians in order to understand indigenous history and culture as it relates to Canada. I am even more humbled by the richness, diversity and beauty of indigenous cultures and will continue to do my work on understanding more about where I live and who was here before us.

This course in beautifully crafted and organized. It has taught me that in order to live in Canada, everyone needs to face the facts about this great country. We need to face the ugliest parts of Canadian history as well as understand the incredible depth and diversity of the cultures that resided here long before settlers arrived.

Thank you to the facilitators who spoke and taught throughout the course and to all that put this amazing piece of education together. Also to the incredible artist we see in each section, whose work will have a lasting impression on me. It taught me so much. I know there is more to learn but this is an incredible start!

With love and gratitude....

By Jean-Francois P

Nov 9, 2020

Today I completed this program, and throughout each module, I was totally involved and learned so much about Indigenous cultures in Canada. To my total disappointment, I realized during the first few modules that our Federal and Provincial Governments and the educational system have lied and hidden so much from us, and I would even say purposely misinformed Canadians and the world about the abuse and the horrible treatments of Indigenous people.

I would suggest that this program be mandatory in all schools across the country from grade 4 or 5 up to grade 12 to properly educate and inform the young generations before their probably already racist entourage wrongly indoctrinates them.

Thank you to all who participated in researching, preparing, and delivering this seminal program that sheds an accurate perspective on Indigenous populations from 1534 to today.

Thank you to the three hosts for a wonderful experience. I am now a more aware, knowledgeable and thankful person.

By Sylvie B

Mar 18, 2021

Très intéressant. Ce cours m'a aidé à mettre ensemble plusieurs pièces du casse-tête et m'a permis d'approfondir mes connaissances sur les peuples autochtones au-delà des préjugés et des stéréotypes véhiculés par la société. J'ai aimé être exposée à l’histoire, la culture, la philosophie, l'art, les valeurs et l'éducation des peuples autochtones d'un point de vue autochtone. Je comprends mieux l’impact de la colonisation sur la population des premières nations et comment le racisme systémique continue à créer des préjudices. Face à la crise climatique à laquelle nous sommes tous confrontés, nous aurions beaucoup d’enseignements à tirer de la sagesse transmise par la parole des aîné-e-s. Je recommande ce cours à tous, et en particulier aux canadiens et canadiennes ne serait-ce que par devoir et respect envers les premiers habitants de notre terre d’accueil. La parole autochtone est pour moi une force émergente qui ne peut qu’enrichir nos vies si on y prête oreille.

By Mari L P

Jun 11, 2021

I thought I knew much about Indigenous Canada. The Treaties section was and eye-opener and mind blowing as to how the Canadian Government are still have control and suppresses the people with the creations of various Laws, Acts and other roadblocks so they remain dependant on them.

The entire course was very informative. It should be a recommendations for high school students. There are to many negative images of the Indigenous Peoples so it would be wonderful if Newcomers to Turtle Island should have to learn about Canada an then when they take their Canadian Citizenship test their should be questions on the country and peoples they choose to become citizens. Being an Indigenous person that is non-Canadian, I can identify with the stereotypes and negative lenses we are viewed.

I got sick after completing Week 9, but I was happy that I was able to extend my completion date. Highly recommend the course to anyone wanting to learn about Canada Indigenous History.

By Anne-Marie J

Jan 5, 2023

This was an excellent course. I wish there was more art shared on the arts portion, but I understand that with licensing, etc. they probably couldn't. I was brought up in Canada, and did very well in Social Studies, which is the subject that teaches us about government and history. I am honestly so disappointed that while I was growing up all this knowledge and information was kept in hidden and not taught to us. I am so glad that this is coming to the forefront of society so that we can learn what has been kept behind closed doors and understand what our wonderful Indigenous peoples have to share with us! What a lot of pain and suffering has happened and continues to happen, needlessly. How could we learn about the atrocities of WWII and South Africa, and all this time the same and worse is happening on Canadian soil, right where we live! I am grateful to the presenters and the creators of this course for teaching me all that I didn't know. Thank you.

By Jason G

Sep 9, 2020

As someone who grew up, denied of his heritage and culture. I am grateful for this course, it's knowledge, understanding and inspiration. The lesson on art and it's ability to raise awareness, understanding, while inspiring, touched my soul and encouraged me even more to continue with my public art sculpture, The Missing Rose. The Missing Rose, funded through the Original Peoples Investment Program by Calgary Arts Development and the City of Calgary. Is a contemporary metal sculpture of 11 enlarged polished steel roses, set in a broken heart shaped vase, centered on a Medicine Wheel base. 11 Roses as one is missing to honor and commemorate our lost sisters. This project is focused on raising awareness and donations, while honoring and commemorating the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls of Canada. Thank you Tracy Bear, Alannah Mandamin-Shawanda, Isaac Twinn and everyone involved in making this course possible. All my Relations,

Jason Gordon

By Kathy M

Dec 5, 2021

I can't say enough good things about this course. It's enriching, well delivered, well structured, the course notes are an incredible and comprehensive resource for further study. As a settler immigrant to Canada with over 35 years in the country, I wish I had access to this information decades ago. I came into the course thinking that I knew quite a bit about Indigenous people's history and contemporary issues and I'm leaving the course with the humble realization that I've barely scratched the surface. I am inspired to continue to learn the truth and to impact positive change through my personal journey of education and understanding which guides me through my own experience of sadness and rage, determination and courage and ultimately, humility and love to stand together with Indigenous peoples in the spirit of reconciling and healing, for the benefit of all people, all tribes. I highly recommend this course. I truly can't believe it's free!

By Doug O

Jun 30, 2020

Very well-delivered and presented. The trio of educators worked well together, each delivering a distinct style of teaching. I was frequently shocked (and saddened) to realize the misinterpretations of Indigenous history that I was exposed to during my secondary and post-secondary education. The selectivity with which our textbooks and teaching materials were produced years ago. And the biases that we non-Indigenous were and often continue to be exposed to. Excellent balance of video, quizzes, interactive art and reading. (There were a few hiccups with the transcription of the interviews and lectures as some speakers words were transcribed inaccurately so their spoken words were contradicted by the transcription notes. I found this in the last third of the course. THUMBS UP for the variety of interviewee subjects and experts. I highly recommend this course, especially to anyone in media or communications and, of course, for educators. Many thanks.