Pedagogy matters: Positive steps towards indigenous cultural competency in a pre-service teacher cohort
Australian Journal of Education
Kurongkurl Katitjin / School of Arts and Humanities
The present study aimed to empirically evaluate the knowledges, attitudes and perspectives of pre-service teachers towards Indigenous peoples, and to identify relationships between student learning experiences and student knowledges, attitudes and preparedness to work with Indigenous peoples, at one Australian university. The project was part of a broader mixed-methods study utilising an Indigenous Graduate Attribute evaluation instrument developed by Indigenous scholars at another Australian university, hence we also present construct validation of the instrument for the present sample. The project identified that students entered the units with positive attitudes towards Indigenous peoples and knowledges and found value in their learning. Students reported that the units facilitated authentic engagement with Indigenous standpoints even though some educators were non-Indigenous. Visible pedagogical and content decisions such as Indigenous leadership in the course, collaboration between Indigenous and non-Indigenous staff, professionally relevant learning opportunities, and engaging with Indigenous perspectives through assessment were all identified to be related to positive experiences of learning.