Department of Educational Policy Studies

Indigenous Peoples Education


Grounded in the traditions of the Aboriginal peoples of Alberta, the international and interdisciplinary focus of this specialization attracts Indigenous students from a variety of disciplines and locations. This specialization combines the conventional parameters and standards of university education with the collective efforts of Indigenous students, scholars, and Elders.

Its aim is to facilitate and support Indigenous scholars whose work is grounded in the values, integrity, and knowledge systems of Indigenous peoples locally and globally. Cultural activities include orientation weekends, sharing circles, Elders support and ceremony.

In keeping with Indigenous cultural norms, all applicants to the Peoples Education program have the opportunity to explore the program by meeting with Indigenous faculty members, student representatives and an Elder prior to admittance.

Program structure

The MEd degree within our department has two routes: course-based and thesis-based. The course-based route requires a minimum of 36 credits, which includes a 3 credits capping exercise. The thesis-based route requires a minimum of 24 credits in graduate courses plus a thesis.

Department core courses

  • EDPS 580 - Contemporary Issues in Education: Perspective & Practice
  • EDPS 581 - Introduction to Evaluating Educational Research

Specialization core courses

Three of the following courses for Master's students form the core of the specialization:

  • EDPS 535 - Indigenous Research Methodologies
  • EDPS 537- Issues in Indigenous Education
  • EDPS 538 - From Oral Tradition to Written Text
  • EDPS 539 - Revitalizing Indigenous Language


Normally, all courses taken as part of the master's program must be at the graduate level (courses numbered 500 and above). In consultation with the program advisor, students are encouraged to take courses across the department or faculty.

Departmental options

500-level or 600-level courses taken across the department or faculty chosen to enhance the program.

A list of courses to be offered throughout the year can be found by accessing the University of Alberta Bear Tracks system.

Students may undertake a supervised individual study course if permitted by their specialization program and only with prior departmental approval. Permission will not be granted if the proposed content is available through regular course offerings.