Decolonising the Curriculum!

It's time to question and transform the way of thinking as well as review how we teach within our university!

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What does Decolonising the Curriculum mean? 

In education, the term ‘decolonisation’ is based on the observation that the global histories of Western colonial domination have limited what is considered knowledge and whose knowledge is recognised.  Recognising the bias and inequality that is created from the knowledge being taught in the curriculum being mainly Western, white and Anglo-centric.  

Knowledge is not owned by one specific group, when we arrive at the idea that western forms of knowledge are just one lineage of knowledge, we miss an abundance of knowledge forms that exist. It entails ensuring the information and perspectives taught are diversified and reflect the importance of minority and indigenous perspectives in research. 

Decolonising the curriculum seeks to question and transform this way of thinking as well as review how we teach within our university. 

Decolonising the curriculum seeks to embed liberation and equality in all aspects of the university from:   

  • Changing course content to include different perspectives and more diverse reading lists 

  • Changing how courses are taught 

  • Developing support and training on decolonising the curriculum 

  • Changing recruitment processes 

However, it is a lot more than simply changing reading lists; a systematic change has to take place. The system in which we currently live in was not designed for BME communities. If we want to effectively decolonise the curriculum, we first need to create a new system that is more inclusive and values people’s lived experiences. 

Why Decolonise the Curriculum?  

Decolonising the curriculum expands the resources and knowledge that is taught and allows for a wealth of perspectives that broadens both students and lecturers' horizons.  

The current curriculum can cause BME students to have an adverse experience at University. Being taught a curriculum which does not teach any aspect of your identity and erases parts of your history can insinuate feelings of exclusion.  

In 2016-2017, a survey conducted by AdvancedHE found that in the United Kingdom amongst 19,000 professors, only 25 were Black women and only 90 Black men.  

We encourage you to take the time to educate yourself on this important topic: 

https://lta.hw.ac.uk/decolonising-the-curriculum-in-a-time-of-pandemic/ 

https://eachother.org.uk/decolonising-the-curriculum-what-it-really-means/  

https://www.shoutoutuk.org/2019/08/30/stems-so-white-a-call-to-decolonise-stem-subjects/ 

https://www.ed.ac.uk/equality-diversity/students/microaggressions 

https://guidetoallyship.com/  

 

 

 

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