Land and Critical Place-Based Education in Canadian Teacher Preparation: Complementary Pedagogies for Complex Futures

  • Alexa Scully


After decades of advocacy by Indigenous scholars and communities, Indigenous education in Canadian teacher education is gaining support and status. Throughout Canadian teacher education, the ‘common knowledge’ of pre-service teachers does not include complex understandings of Indigenous peoples, Lands, or history in what is currently known as Canada, and this has grave consequences for Indigenous peoples and Lands. For my doctoral study, I investigated how critical Place-Based Education (cPBE) is enacted in Indigenous education in teacher education practices in Canada to trouble whiteness, centre Land, and disrupt settler colonialism. I came to understand, as some Indigenous theorists had long known, that the conceptual family of Place may not account well-enough for Land—for Indigenous knowledges, territories, and communities, but that critical Place-based education and Land-based education may work together toward building critical understandings of Indigenous futurities in Canada. This research deeply confirms the dual oppression of Land and of Indigenous peoples that is at the heart of the Canadian identity, but it also offers some answers. Indigenous education in Canadian teacher education must include anti-racist education that contends with white privilege, Land-based learning both in and beyond the classroom, and must centre local Indigenous communities by prioritizing relationships and learning contexts with them.


Indigenous education Teacher education Qualitative Decolonization Place Land 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  • Alexa Scully
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Lakehead UniversityThunder BayCanada
  2. 2.Tulit’aCanada

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