J-School Curriculum: Reporting in Indigenous Communities

It is incumbent upon journalism programs in Canada to ensure that future generations of journalists have the knowledge they need to report respectfully and accurately on Indigenous stories.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Call to Action #86 states:

“We call upon Canadian journalism programs and media schools to require education for all students on the history of Aboriginal peoples, including the history and legacy of residential schools, the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, Treaties and Aboriginal rights, Indigenous law, and Aboriginal– Crown relations.”

It is well recognized that the media has a crucial role to play in informing public discourse and hence the public policies and social climate that impact the lives of Indigenous peoples. In particular, JHR is committed to advancing the fulfillment of the human rights of Indigenous peoples through improved media coverage.

It is in this spirit that JHR has produced its Reporting in Indigenous Communities for Canadian journalism programs.

The modular curriculum is available at no cost to all post-secondary journalism programs in Canada.

The curriculum is made up of four modules, which can be taught together as a full course or individually integrated into existing courses. This flexible design is intended to meet the varying needs and priorities of different institutions.

Module 1: What they didn’t teach you: A journalist’s introduction to Indigenous peoples and communities in Canada

Module 2: Decolonizing media: Perspectives and portrayals of Indigenous people in media

Module 3: Under the influence: Racism and bias in the media

Module 4: Practices & protocol: Reporting in Indigenous communities

Each module is made up of two to four classes, with suggested assignments for both advanced and beginner level students, recommended readings for both students and educators and suggestions for guest speakers.

Educators are strongly encouraged to tailor this material to your local context.

This curriculum was developed for JHR by Jamie Monastyrski and supported by RBC Future Launch.

To request a copy of the curriculum, please click here.


Contact us at [email protected] for more information.

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