Poster Presentation Lowitja Institute International Indigenous Health and Wellbeing Conference 2016

Once were scientists? Claiming Indigenous space in tertiary, health science education (#407)

Rochelle Newport 1 , Teri Ko 1 , Rob Loto 1 , Rowan Herbert 1 , Sonia Fonua 1
  1. Te Kupenga Hauora Māori, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand

The Hikitia Te Ora–Certificate in Health Sciences programme is a one year bridging and foundation programme for Māori and Pacific students who want to pursue a health focused degree at the University of Auckland. The programme delivers courses on Academic and Professional Development, Population Health, Biology, Chemistry, Maths, and Physics. A recent program redesign has created more opportunities to embed Indigenous knowledge and perspectives into the curriculum. The integration of Indigeneity into the teaching space though has led to a number of benefits for both the teaching team and the students. The programme now has an increasingly holistic approach to teaching science, with greater integration of content across courses. The approach also empowers students to value Indigenous knowledge as science, within traditional Western teaching spaces. Furthermore, students through course content and assessments are encouraged to learn, engage, explore and challenge both teaching and their own perspectives on Indigenous knowledge. Despite the growing evidence of success, there were challenges in developing this approach, some of which are still being worked through currently. Using evidence drawn from student work and programme evaluations, as well as reflections from teaching staff, the challenges and successes of claiming Indigenous spaces within Western science will be discussed.