Indigenous Cultural Competency Certificate


This certificate allows participants to engage with teachings about Indigenous peoples and communities, Indigenous perspectives on law, and Indigenous legal systems and draw on cross-cultural learning opportunities to help develop skills based cultural competencies, such as listening, reflecting, and witnessing. 

Participants must complete all seven modules. Participation in a module includes completing readings for and attending the Tuesday experiential learning opportunity or guest lecture, as well as the corresponding educational talking circle for that module.

The talking circle component of each learning module offers students the opportunity to discuss and reflect on the initial experience through both small group discussions and a talking circle.

Participants must also complete a self-reflective journal after each module/ talking circle in order to theorize how to put into practice skills based cultural competencies they are learning.



Certificate Objectives

The ICCC is an eight-month non-credit certificate course that assists students in developing better understandings of colonial assumptions, beliefs, and biases that form the foundation of the Canadian legal system, the history of colonial practices and policies in Canada, Indigenous perspectives on law, and what decolonization means for the practice of law. Through the program participants will learn about implicit bias, anti-racism, histories of Indigenous-Crown relations, including colonial policies and practices enacted through law, Indigenous perspectives on legal issues, and Indigenous law.  

An important part of any professional practice is the ability to be self-reflective. Building the capacity to be self-reflective in both life and work is a key part of developing cultural competence. Participants will be encouraged to reflect on their own identity by thinking about how they are situated in relation and relationship to Indigenous peoples and communities, Indigenous legal systems, and one another as participants in the program.

A key outcome is to allow participants to engage with broad conceptual thinking and develop skills central to a strong professional practice, namely listening, reflecting, and witnessing.  

For an interview regarding the certificate program, please visit the recent article posted here.




Participants must participate in all seven modules offered throughout the 2019-20 year. Attendance will be taken.

Talking circle

Conducted with talking stick in circle format, each circle with be facilitated by a faculty member.

Reflection Module

Participants will submit a journaling component through the Canvas site after each Talking Stick circle. This is not graded and it fulfils the self-reflection component, which is an essential experiential learning piece of pedagogy.


Participants who attend all seven modules will be presented with a Certificate at the closing event, which will include a banquet.


2019-20 Schedule

Modules are offered monthly (Excluding December). The experiential learning opportunities will be held on a Tuesday from 12:30-2:00pm, and the corresponding talking circle will occur on the following Thursday from 12:30-2:00pm in the Indigenous Classroom, Allard Hall, Room 123. The annual Indigenous Awareness Week held February 3rd to 7th, 2020 is also a key component of the modules.  

Module One 

  • September 19th - Indigenous Awareness Retreat to be held at Musqueam Cultural Pavilion from 12:30pm to 8:00pm. Lunch and dinner and transportation will be provided. 
  • September 26th - Reflection Due

Module Two 

  • October 15th - Indian Residential School
  • October 17th - Talking Circle 
  • October 24th - Reflection Due

    The Module will take place in the Residential School History and Dialogue Centre. 
    1985 Learners' Walk, UBC.  This is about a 3 minute walk from Allard Hall. 

Module Three

  • November 19th - ​Elder Led Teachings
  • November 21st - Talking Circle 
  • November 28th - Reflection Due

Module Four 

  • January 7th - Indigenous Legal Theory
  • January 9th - Talking Circle 
  • January 16th - Reflection Due

Module Five 

  • February 3rd to February 7th: Indigenous Awareness Week *Participants may select one event from the schedule to attend
  • February 13th: Talking Circle 
  • February 20th: Reflection Due

Module Six

  • March 17th: Indigenous Law in Practice
  • March 19th: Talking Circle
  • March 26th - Reflection due

Module Seven

  • April 9th: Closing Event
  • Location: Sty-Wet-Tan Hall, First Nations House of Learning
  • Time: 12:30pm - 5:00pm



Registration for the 2019/2020 year is now open.  Please note that the Certificate is only availible for Allard students, faculty, and staff. 
If you would like to register or have any questions please email Devon MacKinlay at


There is a $60 program fee due by Wednesday, September 4th. Please bring a cheque or money order to Cherry Chiu, Student Services Program Assistant, Room 148, Allard Hall.