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Indigenous Studies: First Peoples in Canada Certificate

Indigenous Studies: First Peoples in Canada Certificate

View the Indigenous Strategic Framework

Program Description

The First Peoples program provides an opportunity for students to earn an additional credential concurrent with their diploma program. This new four course certificate program will allow students to explore First Peoples’ current issues, community, relationships, self-governance, and sovereignty within Canada.

Throughout the program students explore themes of diversity, treaties, symbolisms, rites of passage, ceremony, and the Canadian Government’s Statement of Apology to the First Peoples in Canada. Material will be presented through oral traditions, stories, art, music, dance, and symbolism. This additional credential will diversify students’ education, building on their program specific practices and employability  as well as earn a Centennial College Certificate.

Students are required to take GNED 410, GNED 411, GNED 412, and GNED 500 in order to complete the credential. Two of these courses will be taken as the GNED electives. The GNED 500 remains a requirement as specified in the student diploma program. The outstanding course must be taken in addition to your model route and an additional tuition fee will be applied.   

Program Outline


First Peoples Stories: Current Issues

This course introduces students to the current issues in relation to First Peoples in Canada. The course allows students to explore First Peoples lived experiences, values, and beliefs, through stories, art, music and song. Topics will include: #IdleNoMore, the First Nations Education Act, the Keystone pipeline, the Highway of Tears, the Sixties Scoop, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and residential schools.


First Peoples Stories: Communities
Prerequisite: GNED-410 

This course will examine the role of communities and community development amongst the First Peoples of Canada. Relationships have played a significant role within First Peoples communities, and through the use of stories, students will explore diverse relationships between First Peoples, between bands, clans, and the relationship to self. Students will further look at the relationship to land, nature, and spiritually.


First Peoples Stories: Self-governance and Sovereignty
Prerequisite: GNED-411

This course will allow students to explore themes of self-governance and sovereignty, building on previous First Peoples studies courses on current issues (GNED-250) and community (GNED-252). Through stories about reclamation, advocacy, and agency students will examine the evolving perspectives on self-governance and self-determination.


Global Citizenship: From Social Analysis to Social Action

Global citizenship provides students with an opportunity to gain the knowledge and skills required to live and work in a world that is globally interconnected. Students will examine and critically analyze social problems, gain an understanding of identity and values, develop an awareness of media conglomeration, power and control, and investigate issues of equality and equity using different perspectives to develop a plan for social action that will bring about positive change. This course allows students to develop a sound understanding of what it means to be a global citizen, both personally and professionally, and the ways in which they can make a contribution to an equitable society and world.