Australian minorities : concepts and perspectives : a tertiary level elective course

  • Sandra Renew

    Student thesis: Master's Thesis


    This field study is an attempt to provide detailed suggestions for a one semester elective course of study Australian Minorities: Concepts and Perspectives to be offered at a tertiary institution. It is intended primarily to provide a context in which minority group persons can be introduced to and analyse the theories and concepts which have been used to describe them as minority group persons, and to give minority group persons the opportunity to formulate and develop their own theories and concepts derived from their own experience. Since the program in which the course is offered is already operating and this course is a required part of it, the case for the provision of specific courses for minority group students is not argued here. The purpose in providing a detailed course description through this field study is (a) to contribute to the, as yet, small number of tertiary level courses from which both minority group and mainstream students select their programs, and (b) to provide suggestions for teachers of such courses to enable them to present courses which have specific interest for minority group students. The principles on which the course is constructed constitute a blending of humanistic and social reconstructionist perspectives with the purpose of (a) making the course acceptable to the espoused values of institutions offering teacher education programs, and (b) providing students with some knowledge and skills whereby they are empowered to make changes in the societies in which they will work. The course was compiled from (a) Suggestions solicited on an informal basis from students involved in an initial teaching of a similar course. (b) The writer's perceptions of needs arising from experience of teaching in a tertiary program catering specifically for Aboriginal and Islander persons. (c) Library research of, especially, material written by minority group persons, but also material written about minority group persons. Suggestions for evaluating the effectiveness of the course are provided because it is intended that this course be used as a base or beginning structure to generate new courses, or for modifications of this one according to specific needs of teachers and student groups. It is presented in a form intended to be useful as a starting point for other minority group teachers involved in offering courses to cater for similar needs. Source material is drawn mainly from sociological and philosophical perspectives, combining western concepts from these disciplines with contemporary minority group definitions of experience.
    Date of Award1983
    Original languageEnglish

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