Community-controlled education : putting education back into the culture.
This thesis is an interpretive case study, drawing upon feminist and Aboriginal perspectives,
about working in an educational environment described as a border world comprised of overlapping
cultures. It is a chronological account of the delivery of a university programme in a First Nations
The study seeks to explore the reasons why Aboriginal women enter and successfully
complete post-secondary study, and whether their roles in traditional Aboriginal culture facilitate this
process. This first portion of the study involved semi-structured interviews with three female
Aboriginal educators, focusing on the traditional roles of women within Cree culture, and the
relationship of these traditional roles to their roles in contemporary Cree society.
The second portion of the study involves a series of group and personal interviews with
female Aboriginal learners involved in a community-based programme in a Northern Cree
community. The interviews, which encompassed a three-year period, sought to provide a
chronological account of the learners' experiences in the programme. In addition, interviews were
conducted with faculty members teaching within the programme. The interviews provided the data
for an operation model entitled Community-Controlled Education that suggests criteria for the
delivery of an inclusive learning experience for Aboriginal learners.