Pre-service Physical Education Teachers’ Indigenous Knowledge, Cultural Competency and Pedagogy: A Service Learning Intervention

Jul. 01, 2016

Source: Teaching Education, Volume 27, Issue 3, 2016, pages 248-266

In this article, the authors investigate the effects of a community- and school-based service learning experience (SLE) on pre-service physical education teachers’ Indigenous knowledge, cultural competency and pedagogy.

Informed by the theoretical tenets of Indigenous research methodologies, experiential learning and critical reflection, the authors examine 55 final-year pre-service physical education teachers’ cultural learning and competency in a core unit of study with a six-week SLE.
Measures of their experiences included reflective journals, multicultural teaching competency scales and focus group interviews.

Findings support the design of the SLE, with statistically significant changes in pre-service teachers’ perceptions of their cultural competency (p < 0.001). Pre-service teachers were able to challenge their assumptions about Indigenous students, plan and implement student-centred and culturally relevant pedagogies. Attention is drawn to the design of this SLE and demonstrates the importance of using Indigenous community members and teachers as mentors, which has not been explored in previous SLE studies.

Updated: Jan. 17, 2017