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Indigenous Studies

Indigenous Studies — Bachelor of Arts degree


Bachelor's degree

4 years

Major and minor

How to apply

Start date:
September, January, May 

Abbotsford campus, Chilliwack campus at CEP



  • Field trips enhance classroom learning
  • Practicum provides work experience and industry contacts
  • Circle learning
  • Interaction with Elders; Stó:lō cultural teachings
  • Program eligible for financial aid


As part of UFV Bachelor of Arts, you have the option to complete an Indigenous major or minor.

In order to provide breadth of learning, courses are organized around four themes: Indigenous History, Social Relations and Governance, Land and Culture, and World View and Spirituality.

The program is focused on Indigenous ways of knowing, Indigenous issues, contemporary challenges, and processes of decolonization with the aim of improving Indigenous/settler society relations and forging new paths and relations.

All students have the opportunity to enrich their learning by participating in field trips, circle learning, interaction with Elders, Stó:lō cultural teachings, and special guest lectures.

Major in Indigenous Studies

Requirements for students wanting to complete a major in Indigenous Studies include 6 credits of Indigenous languages and 14-16 Indigenous People Knowledge (IPK) credits.

Remaining credits include a rich selection of courses in IPK, history, political science, anthropology, sociology, and geography, as well as courses to acquire applied skills in business, management, and communication.

Fourth-year students have the opportunity to either complete a capstone project or a two supervised field placements with local Indigenous agencies.

View program outline in UFV Academic Calendar


The minor in Indigenous Studies centres around Indigenous language courses and Indigenous People Knowledge courses, with two electives chosen from a large selection of options.

A minor in Indigenous Studies can help you gain valuable cultural knowledge by providing you with a thorough introduction to the social, cultural, and spiritual heritage of the Stó:lō people.

View program outline in UFV Academic Calendar

Laddering from certificates or diplomas

Students who have completed any of the following certificates and diplomas are able to bring credits earned into the minor and major:

  • Stó:lō Studies Certificate
  • Indigenous Arts Certificate (Honouring Our Gifts)
  • Indigenous Maps, Films, Rights, and Land Claims Certificate
  • Aboriginal Culture and Language Support Diploma
  • Social Services Diploma — First Nations Option
  • Certificate in Extended Studies in Social Services — First Nations Option


Indigenous people are Canada fastest-growing demographic. According to Statistics Canada, They currently account for 4.3% of the Canadian popultion. And this number is expected to grow to 5.3% by 2030.

Paralleling this trend is a rising awareness  that the dominant post-colonial culture has marginalized Indigenous people and denied them the right to participate and have a voice. Much work must occur to repair relations between Indigenous people and settler communities.

As a result, First Nations communities and agencies, and government ministries that serve First Nations need trained leaders and advocates to work in the areas of treaty negotiations, policy development, and resource management. Work opportunities also exist in public service, in schools, prisons, and municipalities that work with First Nations people.

Sample Employers

  • Indigenous organizations
  • First Nations communities
  • Aboriginal community liaison offices
  • Community Services
  • Government agencies
  • School districts
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Research centres & heritage sites


View entrance requirements in the UFV Academic Calendar


This program is open to international students


Students who do not meet the entrance requirements can upgrade in order to meet prerequisites for university classes.

Book an appointment with an Upgrading and University Preparation advisor to discuss your upgrading needs. 


  1. Respectfully identify and implement processes of de-colonization that empower Indigenous ways of knowing and improve Indigenous and non-Indigenous relations;
  2. Identify what is relevant to Indigenous resurgence and empowerment;
  3. Bridge worldview differences and understand cultural differences between Indigenous and settler societies;
  4. Use Indigenous research methodologies to develop research questions that address contemporary Indigenous issues and/or Indigenous and Settler relations;
  5. Be innovative, capable, and effective in enacting change in specific real-world and workplace environments.


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