, Volume 62, Issue 4, pp 375–382 | Cite as

Indigenizing Curriculum Development and Online Course Design: a Caribbean Study

  • Dorothea Nelson
  • Gale Parchoma
Original Paper


This article reports preliminary findings of a research project that used participatory action research (PAR) methodology. The PAR methodology gives voice and ownership to prospective students and other stakeholders in the design of a culturally sensitive library science program and its related online courses in the English-speaking Eastern Caribbean. The paper emphasizes and explores the criticality of indigenizing/localizing research and addresses various considerations in engaging inclusive research and practice. Preliminary findings of this study indicate that the combination of PAR, the CoI framework, and “Third Space” sensitivity resulted in developing an enthusiastic researcher-practitioner community focused on integrating technology into an indigenous library science program.


Caribbean Community of inquiry Course design Indigenizing research Participatory action research Third space 


  1. Adams, G. (2014). Decolonizing methods: African studies and qualitative research. Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, 31(4), 467–474. Scholar
  2. Alavi, S., & Taghizadeh, M. (2013). Cognitive presence in virtual learning community: An EFL case. International Journal of E-Learning & Distance Education, 27(1), 1–13 Retrieved from Scholar
  3. Anderson, T., Rourke, L., Garrison, D. R., & Archer, W. (2001). Assessing teaching presence in a computer conferencing context. The Journal of Asynchronous Networks, 5(2), 1–17.Google Scholar
  4. Battiste, M. (Ed.). (2000). Reclaiming indigenous voice and vision. Vancouver: University of British Columbia Press.Google Scholar
  5. Beaton, B., & Carpenter, P. (2011). Creating appropriate participatory action research with remote first nations. Antistasis, 5(2), 50–61.Google Scholar
  6. Bereiter, C., & Scardamalia, M. (2014). Knowledge building and knowledge creation: One concept, two hills to climb. In S. C. Tan, H. J. So, & J. Yeo (Eds.), Knowledge creation in education (pp. 35–52). Singapore: Springer.Google Scholar
  7. Bhabha, H. K. (1994). The location of culture. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  8. Billings, D. (2015). Culturally and linguistically responsive teaching: Part I. Journal of Continuing Education in Nursing, 46(2), 62–64. Scholar
  9. Chen, B., & deNoyelles, A. (2017). Creating a community of inquiry in large-enrolment online courses: An exploratory study on the effect of protocols within online discussions. Online Learning, 21(1), 165–188.Google Scholar
  10. Chilisa, B. (2012). Indigenous research methodologies. Los Angeles: Sage Kindle edition.Google Scholar
  11. Chulach, T., & Gagnon, M. (2016). Working in a 'third space': A closer look at hybridity, identity and agency of nurse practitioners. Nursing Inquiry, 23(1), 52–63. Scholar
  12. deNoyelles, A., Zydney, J. M., & Chen, B. (2014). Strategies for creating a community of inquiry through online asynchronous discussions. MERLOT Journal of Online Learning and Teaching, 10(1), 153–165.Google Scholar
  13. Foreman-Peck, L., & Travers, K. (2015). Developing expertise in managing dialogue in the 'third space': Lessons from a participatory evaluation. Evaluation, 21(3), 344–358. Scholar
  14. Garrison, D. R. (2007). Online community of inquiry review: Social, cognitive, and teaching presence issues. Journal of Asynchronous Learning Networks, 11(1), 61–72.Google Scholar
  15. Garrison, D. R. (2012). Article review –social presence within the community of inquiry framework. The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, 13(1) Retrieved from
  16. Garrison, D. R. (2016). Thinking collaboratively: Learning in a community of inquiry. New York: Routledge.Google Scholar
  17. Garrison, D. R., & Akyol, Z. (2015). Toward the development of a metacognition construct for communities of inquiry. The Internet and Higher Education, 24, 66–71. Scholar
  18. Garrison, D. R., Anderson, T., & Archer, W. (2000). Critical inquiry in a text-based environment: Computer conferencing in higher education. The Internet and Higher Education, 2(2–3), 87–105.Google Scholar
  19. Garrison, D. R., Cleveland-Innes, M., & Fung, T. S. (2010). Exploring causal relationships among teaching, cognitive and social presence: Student perceptions of the community of inquiry framework. Internet and Higher Education, 13(1–2), 31–36. Scholar
  20. George, G., & Lewis, T. (2011). Exploring the global/local boundary in education in developing countries: The case of the Caribbean. Compare: A Journal of Comparative and International Education, 41(6), 721–734. Scholar
  21. Gutiérrez-Santiuste, E., Rodríguez-Sabiot, C., & Gallego-Arrufat, M. (2015). Cognitive presence through social and teaching presence in communities of inquiry: A correlational-predictive study. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 31(3), 349–362.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Kennedy, N. S., & Kennedy, D. (2010). Between chaos and entropy: Community of inquiry from a systems perspective. Complicity: An International Journal of Complexity and Education, 7(2), 1–15.Google Scholar
  23. Lauzon, A. C. (2000). Distance education and diversity: Are they compatible? American Journal of Distance Education, 14(2), 61–70. Scholar
  24. Ma, J., Han, X., Yang, J., & Cheng, J. (2014). Examining the necessary condition for engagement in an online learning environment based on learning analytics approach: The role of the instructor. Internet and Higher Education, 24, 26–34. Scholar
  25. McLoughlin, C., & Oliver, R. (2000). Designing learning environments for cultural inclusivity: A case study of the indigenous online learning at tertiary level. Australian Journal of Educational Technology, 16(1), 58–72.Google Scholar
  26. Ntseane, P. G. (2011). Culturally sensitive transformational learning: Incorporating the Afrocentric paradigm and African feminism. Adult Education Quarterly, 61(4), 307–323. Scholar
  27. O’Loughlin, M. (1992). Rethinking science education: Beyond Piagetian constructivism toward a sociocultural model of teaching and learning. Journal of Research in Science Teaching, 29, 791–820.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Sharp, A. M. (1987). What is a community of inquiry? Journal of Moral Education, 16(1), 37–45. Scholar
  29. Simonds, V. W., & Christopher, S. C. (2013). Adapting western research methods to indigenous ways of learning. American Journal of Public Health, 103(12), 2185–2192. Scholar

Copyright information

© Association for Educational Communications & Technology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Werklund School of EducationUniversity of CalgaryCalgaryCanada
  2. 2.University of SaskatchewanSaskatoonCanada

Personalised recommendations