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Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

HUMS 1771: Introduction to Human Service Practice with Indigenous Communities

Students examine the historical and continuing process of colonization in Canada, and the resulting societal, political, linguistic, spiritual, and cultural impacts that are challenging Indigenous people today. The development of cultural understanding and the beginning of culturally competent practice occur in this course. Additional topics include self-government, cultural healing and empowerment, and human service practice in Indigenous communities.

Learning outcomes

After successfully completing this course, you will be able to:

  1. Identify a variety of social, political, cultural and spiritual issues that are challenging Indigenous people today.
  2. Describe how the historical issues are impacting Indigenous people today.
  3. Explain why the Indigenous population is over-represented in the social determinants of health.
  4. Describe the role of education in the lives of Indigenous people.
  5. Describe ways some Indigenous people are empowering and healing their communities.
  6. Describe the role of the First Nations Support Worker.

Course topics

HUMS 1771 includes the following lessons and topics:

  • Lesson 1: Indigenous Peoples of Canada
  • Lesson 2: Indigenous Knowledge & Helping Professions
  • Lesson 3: “Self,” “Self-Care,” and “Helping” with Indigenous Peoples
  • Lesson 4: Indigenous Approaches to Helping
  • Lesson 5: Indigenous Approaches and Ethical Human Service Practice
  • Lesson 6: Community and Spirituality
  • Lesson 7: Physical Health for Indigenous People
  • Lesson 8: Mental Health for Indigenous People
  • Lesson 9: Indigenous Justice
  • Lesson 10: Issues of Diversity
  • Lesson 11: Caring for Children and Families

Required text and materials

  • Baskin, C. (2016). Strong helpers’ teachings: The value of Indigenous knowledges in the helping professions (2nd ed.). Toronto, ON: Canadian Scholars’ Press.
    ISBN: 978-1551309422

Additional requirements

Computer and Internet access is required for this online course.


To complete this course successfully, you must achieve a passing grade of 50 per cent or higher on the overall course and 50 per cent or higher on the mandatory Final Project. The following table illustrates how your final grade will be determined for this course.

Assessments Weighting
Assignment 1: Historical Policies, Local Knowledge, and Human Service Practice 10%
Assignment 2: “Self” and “Helping” Indigenous Peoples and Communities 15%
Quiz 30%
Assignment 3: Critical Reflection 15%
Final Project: Media Presentation * 30%




Open Learning Faculty Member Information

An Open Learning Faculty Member is available to assist students. Students will receive the necessary contact information at the start of the course.

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