Date of Submission


Document Type



Doctor of Education




indigenization, decolonization theory, organizational culture, adaptive leadership, collaboration, community of practice


Since the release of the Calls to Action from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada in 2015, the post-secondary sector has focused their attention on the indigenization of programming and practices with mixed results. This Organizational Improvement Plan (OIP) presents a possible solution to embed Indigenous knowledge and culture in a program offered at a large urban college in Canada.

Both decolonization theory and Schein’s cultural assessment (2017) are used to identify current values and structures that are barriers to the effective integration of Indigenous knowledge in course curriculum and teaching. Utilizing an adaptive leadership framework (Hefeitz, 1994, Northouse, 2016) this OIP works to overcome identified obstacles by emphasizing collaboration, learning, and a safe environment that supports faculty in adopting new ways of thinking and working. This OIP focuses on the creation of a collaborative partnership with Indigenous communities (Guenette & Marshall, 2008; Hongyan, 2012; Pete, 2016; Young, Zubrzycki, Green, Jones, Stratton & Bessarab, 2013), mandatory faculty training (Pidgeon, 2016), and the development of a community of practice (CoP) (Ledoux, 2006; Ottmann, 2013) to facilitate a transparent and effective process for the indigenization of courses and teaching. This OIP may provide a model for other institutions working toward the goal of indigenization within their programming.