• Alaska Native claims settlement act and the unresolved issues of profit sharing, corporate democracy, and the new generations of Alaska Natives

      Blatchford, Edgar; Gerlach, Craig; Nakazawa, Anthony T.; Gabrielli, Ralph B.; Pullar, Gordon L.; Shepro, Carl E. (2013-08)
      The Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act was an experiment and a radical departure from policies in creating corporations with all shareholders being equal. The replication of publically traded corporate governance has created frustrations, inequities and unintended consequences for thousands of Natives which can be righted only if the experiment is continued. This is not a history of land claims but an attempt to unravel a tangled web of leadership, political, and rural development issues that are intimately interwoven with the ANCSA corporations. This paper is not about second guessing the leadership of the movement but about the need to understand how difficult it is to create rural development on corporate lands whose shareholders may or may not be residents and may not be Native.
    • Arctic passages: maternal transport, Iñupiat mothers and Northwest Alaska communities in transition

      Schwarzburg, Lisa Llewellyn; Duffy, Lawrence; Loring, Philip; Fast, Phyllis; Saylor, Brian (2013-12)
      While the primary goal of the northwest Alaska Native village maternal transport program is safe deliveries for mothers from remote villages, little has been done to examine the impact of transport on the mothers and communities involved. I explore how present values (Western and Iñupiat cultural values) can influence the desire of indigenous women of differing eras and Northwest Alaska villages to participate in biomedical birth practices, largely as made available by a tribal health-sponsored patient transport system. The work that follows portrays the varying influences on these women and their communities as they determine the level of importance for mothers to get to the hospital to deliver. I have enlisted viewpoints of Alaska Native families and women of different generations from various lñupiat villages to help paint a picture of the situation. With this research, I ask, how do generations of mothers, transport situations, and villages compare in terms of experiences during the processes of these Iñupiat women becoming mothers? What gender, ethnicity, and power interplays exist in this dynamic helix of social and political elements (embodiment) during their periods of liminality? What are influences (biomedical and community) that contribute to a woman's transition to motherhood in this community? Moreover, how do women, families, and community members perceive the maternal transport policy today? I examine how the transport policy figures into stages of liminality, as these mothers and communities produce future generations. With theoretical frameworks provided by medical anthropology and maternal identity work, I track the differences concerning the maternal transport operation for lñupiat mothers of the area. I compare the influences of cultural value systems present in each of the communities by birth era and location. Using content analysis to determine common themes, I found connections among presence of Iñupiat values, community acceptance of maternal transport, and expressed desire for community autonomy in maternal health care.
    • Bride-stealing: a myth of misogyny

      Murugesan, Seetha; Duffy, Lawrence; Bartlett, Doris A.; Koskey, Michael; Yesner, David R. (2013-12)
      Bride-stealing, an explicit symbolic misogynistic action in The Iliad and The Kamba Ramayanam, is analyzed as a long-term patterned conduct of human behavior among the peoples who produced these works. The systematic pattern of bride stealing found in the epics discussed suggests that within these groups social constructs had always been in favor of female inferiority and subjugation. This places an emphasis on gender as an issue, manifested in the treatment of women by men as "others." The narrations of marginalization of women in the epics lead to a critique of the hypothesis that they are misogynistic. Here a framework of theoretical formulation is put forward to explore the origin of the practice of bride-stealing as well as the behavioral and psychological factors behind the intentions of both abductor and the abductee. The ancient epics are examined in a comparative literary style, and analyzed from an interdisciplinary stance with the guidance of cultural patterns, historically-created social orders and power-motivated political systems. After examining five thousand years of the history of ancient Greece and India, substantiated by archeological, anthropological, and linguistic evidence, this dissertation argues that the phenomenon of "bride stealing" occurred basically in male-dominant societies and stems from various components of the socio-economic setting of these societies. Studies show that the abducted women in the epics lived in times of social transition. The abuse of women that echoes in the epics is sometimes misconceived as reflecting misogyny. Women were targets in times of upheaval, and suffered due to incursions of pastoral nomads imposing their social order of patriarchy. This paper deduces that women were the victims of war, and that, following successful conquests by these pastoral nomadic societies and subsequent shifts in political power, their status underwent tremendous change. Furthermore, the abductions and overpowering behaviors of men towards women in myths and epics served as encoded messages to women from men to sustain their superiority over the "others," reflecting the ongoing imposition of values from the dominant culture.
    • Compulsory education and resilience in northern Alaska: the role of social learning and youth in healthy sustainable communities

      Cost, Douglas Scott; Leonard, Beth; Hirshberg, Diane; Barnhardt, Ray; Chapin, F. Stuart, III; Sparrow, Elena (2017-08)
      How can education in the Arctic foster individual and community resilience in a time of rapid social-environmental change? Education and learning, have powerful potential to affect future social-environmental system resilience. This research unpacks and examines the connections and feedbacks among studies of social-environmental systems (SESs), resilience, compulsory education and Indigenous knowledge. The last few decades have witnessed global recognition of rapid climate change in the Arctic; primarily the diminishing cryosphere. This has led to discussion and debate over the role of schools in addressing local knowledge, environmental changes, and community priorities. In the U.S. state of Alaska and in other Arctic regions, the role of compulsory schooling, in particular public schools, in improving the fit between environmental changes, learning practices, and future policies for local to regional Arctic SESs has been largely overlooked. I hypothesize that, as extensions of governments, public schools in the U.S. Arctic and in similar locations offer an opportunity to better link societies and environments through governance. At the individual level, education is a vital component of resilience, but such education must embrace multiple perspectives in its curriculum to honor and access the diverse input offered by local, Indigenous, and Western methods of knowledge production. At the societal scale, schools are an untapped resource with which to meet the challenge of bolstering capacity for proactive adaptation in a time of rapid transformation. Youth in the Arctic will actively shape the future yet currently remain an untapped resource in the pursuit of community resilience. Critical thinking exercises like scenarios development are crucial to build adaptive capacity, in large part through entraining leadership skills based on multiple forms of knowledge brought to bear on the complexity of SES change. This research demonstrates, through three periods of fieldwork between 2012-2016 engaging resident youth and older experts from the Northwest Arctic and North Slope Boroughs, the significance of compulsory, higher, and Indigenous educations to residents. The cumulative results of this interdisciplinary study offer two overarching and generalizable lessons. First, empowering young people through rigorous involvement in multiple knowledge systems, thinking, deliberating, and planning for futures develops a foundation for effective individual and community resilience throughout their adult years. Second, alternative school practices can provide the flexibility, support, and innovation necessary to enable young people to gain Western education but with ample time and space to provide Indigenous knowledge learning and to engage in livelihoods based on their unique environments and the traditions of their ancestors.
    • Cultivating Sustainability Through Participatory Action Research: Place -Based Education And Community Food Systems In Interior Alaska

      Henry-Stone, Laura R.; Barnhardt, Ray; Gerlach, Craig; Kofinas, Gary; Webster, Joan Parker (2008)
      As the environmental movement grows into a broader sustainability revolution, we must move beyond the traditional scope of environmental education to address social-ecological challenges through integrated education for sustainability. This research explores how place-based education can promote sustainability of a community food system in which feedbacks between production and consumption are integrated within a biocultural region. Through participatory action research, the project develops and demonstrates pedagogical components of sustainability that are applicable to formal and non-formal educational contexts. In this pedagogy, the purpose of sustainability education is to foster a community culture that will promote the emergence of sustainability in complex adaptive systems with social and ecological components. This work is based at the Effie Kokrine Charter School (EKCS), a junior-senior high school in Fairbanks, Alaska that teaches with an Alaska Native approach, emphasizing place-based, experiential, and holistic education by utilizing students' natural and human communities to facilitate learning. The collaborative design of an Interior Alaska gardening curriculum serves as both an organizing framework for the project's fieldwork as well as an outcome of the research. The resultant gardening curriculum and the rationale behind its design demonstrate components of pedagogy for sustainability, including systems thinking, place-based and problem-based learning, eco-cultural literacy, eco-justice values, and appropriate assessment. Sustainability pedagogy within settings of higher education should also include action research. The structure of this dissertation research reflects how action research incorporates components of sustainability pedagogy. This pedagogical framework has theoretical and practical implications in multiple educational settings and indicates ways for our educational institutions to participate in the global sustainability revolution.
    • Deconstructing the western worldview: toward the repatriation and indigenization of wellness

      Rahm, Jacqueline Marie; Koskey, Michael; Lewis, Jordan; John, Theresa; Leonard, Beth (2014-12)
      As Indigenous peoples and scholars advance Native histories, cultures, and languages, there is a critical need to support these efforts by deconstructing the western worldview in a concerted effort to learn from indigenous knowledge and ways of knowing for humanity's future wellbeing. Toward that imperative, this research brings together and examines pieces of the western story as they intersect with Indigenous peoples of the lands that now comprise the United States of America. Through indigenous frameworks and methodologies, it explores a forgotten epistemology of the pre-Socratic and Pythagorean Archaic and Classical Greek eras that is far more similar to indigenous worldviews than it is to the western paradigm today. It traces how the West left behind this timeless wisdom for the "new learning" and the European colonial settlers arrived in the old "New World" with a fragmented, materialistic, and dualistic worldview that was the antithesis to those of Indigenous peoples. An imbalanced and privileged worldview not only justified an unacknowledged genocide in world history, it is characteristic of a psycho-spiritual disease that plays out across our global society. This dissertation suggests that the healing of the western mind rests with shifting the dominant paradigm toward a fundamental axiom of holism found within the life-ways of American Indigenous peoples and also buried within the West's own ancestry, particularly within a misunderstood ancient Greek tradition at the cornerstone of the western world.
    • Deg Xinag Oral Traditions: Reconnecting Indigenous Language And Education Through Traditional Narratives

      Leonard, Beth R.; Barnhardt, Raymond J. (2007)
      "Deg Xinag," literally 'local language' is the westernmost of the Athabascan 1 languages. The language area is also referred to as "Deg Hit'an," literally, 'local people'. The Deg Hit'an are often referred to inappropriately in anthropological and linguistic literature as "Ingalik," a Yup'ik word meaning 'lice-infested'. There are currently three villages in western, interior Alaska where this language is spoken and about 20 fluent speakers of this language remaining. As I proceeded through my graduate research I came to understand the significance of indigenous language revitalization in relation to its potential contributions to indigenous and cross-cultural education. These contributions include establishing and enhancing self-identity and self-esteem for indigenous students, as well as contributing in-depth knowledge about local environments thereby enhancing place-based and funds of knowledge educational models (Bamhardt and Kawagley 2005: 15; Moll 1990). This dissertation presents an interdisciplinary analysis of a complex, cosmological Deg Hit'an narrative entitled "Nil oqay Ni'idaxin" or "The Man and Wife" told in the Deg Xinag language by the late Belle Deacon of Grayling Alaska (1987b). Deacon also told her own English version and titled this "The Old Man Who Came Down From Above the Second Layer of the World" (1987c). Underlying structures and meanings used in the contexts of Deg Xinag oral traditions are currently lacking in most published materials for this language, making it difficult to learn and consequently, develop culturally-appropriate language learning programs and curriculum. This analysis encompasses the fields of Alaska Native/indigenous studies, anthropology, and folklore/oral traditions using philosophical and pedagogical frameworks established by indigenous scholars including Gregory Cajete, Oscar Kawagley, and Greg Sarris. 1The term "Athabascan" has varied spellings within the literature, including "Athapaskan" and "Athabaskan." In 1997, Tanana Chiefs Conference (TCC), the interior Alaska tribal consortium adopted a resolution stating their tribes' preference of the spelling using "b" and "c."
    • Digital Dead Ends Along Alaska's Information Highway: Broadband Access For Students And Teachers In Alaska's High School One-To-One Laptop Programs

      Lloyd, Pamela Jo; Monahan, John; Richey, Jean; Roehl, Roy; Eck, Norman; Crumley, Robert; Knight, Phil (2012)
      This dissertation analyzes the potential impact community broadband availability has on personal and classroom levels of technology adoption for high school students and teachers in Alaska. Community broadband availability was defined as, (a) terrestrial broadband availability; (b) satellite broadband availability; and (c) no broadband available. The theoretical framework for this study used a concurrent mixed methods design, beginning with quantitative surveys with open-ended questions administered to teachers and students. Open coding analysis produced themes from student focus groups and open-ended questions used to complement the quantitative analysis. The sample population included high school teachers and students in one-to-one laptop programs from 13 school districts in 39 communities in Alaska spread across three categories of community broadband availability. All participating schools met the criteria for a complete one-to-one laptop solution. Key findings using an analysis of variance resulted in a statistically significant difference in personal use levels of adoption among students compared across three categories of community broadband available. Students living in communities with no broadband access had lower personal use levels of adoption compared to students living in communities with terrestrial or satellite broadband availability. There was no significant difference in student classroom levels technology adoption compared across three categories of community broadband availability. There was no statistical difference among teachers in personal or classroom levels of adoption. There continues to be a need to study these digital learning environments to determine conditions under which positive learning outcomes may be achieved. A study based in Alaska, focusing on student and teacher levels of adoption in personal and classroom, given broadband availability will provide data for policymakers, administrators, and stakeholders to make decisions regarding the impacts of the digital divide. The investment in rural areas of Alaska is significant for not only jobs and long-term economic benefits, but also to the citizenry of Alaska in expanding the opportunities for all of our students to be globally competitive, no matter their zip code.
    • Diideets'ii in our pathway (in our future): Gwich'in educational philosophy and transformative praxis in K-12 education

      Fisher, Charleen; Leonard, Beth; Schneider, William; Aruskevich, Kas; Koskey, Michael (2018-05)
      Gwich'in pedagogy is largely undocumented in Western academia. Gwich'in epistemology includes holistic perspectives on all Western content areas, and crosses the usual segmented knowledge genres. Inter-generational transmission of Gwich'in knowledge occurs in many places including the natural environment, with long-standing cultural ties to place. Gwich'in pedagogy is relational, place-based, holistic, cooperative, purposeful and subjective. Gwich'in gaagwidandaii, or communal knowledge, predates the inception of many world societies. Gwich'in concepts presented in this paper will include the introduction of a framework called Kheegwadadhaak'a', translated to mean, "We just keep the fire going." This framework is a visualization. Important concepts of Gwich'in pedagogy include traditional ideas of assessments or standards using the phrases nil'ee t'ah'in and ch'aadaii, both meaning that someone has a natural talent or is adept at something, for girls and boys, respectively. Learning, or gik'yanjii in Gwich'in, also means "to find out, notice or sense." This comprehension includes a deep, contextual understanding of traditional Gwich'in knowledge. The three types of Gwich'in knowledge are gaagwidandaii, gihk'agwagwaanjik, and gaatr'oahtan. These translate as"collectively known, individually learned, and taught knowledge," respectively. Gwich'in have a complex and relational pedagogy. This pedagogy attempts to achieve contextuality, or duulee ginlii, which translates as "proficiency, agility, ability to do almost anything, being extremely good at anything they do, or overall 'sharpness' in life." This process is importantly both a communal and personal journey.
    • Energy-efficient homes in Alaska: historical and contemporary perspectives on adaptation and innovation

      Hossain, Yasmeen; Loring, Philip; Marsik, Tom; Chapin, F. Stuart, III; Gerlach, Craig (2017-08)
      Global climate change is largely caused by greenhouse gas emissions from anthropogenic sources. The building industry is responsible for over 40% of global carbon emissions. Almost half of the energy consumption in buildings is from space heating and cooling. The incorporation of energy efficiency in homes has a large potential to mitigate future climate change impacts while at the same time aiding household members to adapt to the effects of global change. This dissertation explores this potential in Alaska, where in addition to climate change impacts, residents are vulnerable to high oil prices affecting not only their energy security, but also their health, food security, and sense of place. This interdisciplinary dissertation explores the viability of Alaskan energy-efficient homes from social, economic, and environmental perspectives. In the following chapters, I first use a conceptual model of energy security that is adopted from the food security literature to determine that a significant segment of Alaska is in an energy-insecure state. This is predominantly due to expensive fuel, overreliance on fuel imports, inefficient uses of heating fuel, and a legacy of inefficient homes. Next, I provide a historical survey of Alaskan homes from pre-contact dwellings to modern era homes. Some of the pre-contact homes' energy efficiency features have been reintroduced in some modern homes, such as a small square-foot-to-occupant ratio, passive solar design, arctic entrance, round or octagonal building layout, using earth berming, sand dunes, and snow banks as natural insulation, permafrost lined cellars, subterranean building style, thermal mass, and shared stone walls between rooms. Third, I discuss interviews conducted with homeowners of highly energy-efficient homes and other stakeholders in the building-, real estate- and financing industry, which reveal several barriers to the adoption of this building style innovation. The predominant barriers are lack of information and education on this building style by homeowners, designers, and builders; economic disincentive due to a low appraisal value; and a psychological mindset resisting change. Finally, I use a case study of a highly energy-efficient home in Dillingham, Alaska to exemplify the carbon payback point. Using a life cycle assessment approach, I calculated that within 3.3 years the highly energy-efficient house has reached carbon parity when compared to a conventional counterpart house. Collectively, I build on these findings to recommend improvements in education about the benefits of energy efficiency, an overhaul of the appraisal system, and a careful consideration of the psychological aspects of embracing innovations in an effort to facilitate wider adoption of highly energy-efficient homes in Alaska.
    • Exploring The Challenges Of School Counseling: Voices From Rural Alaska

      Cook, Christine Rojas; Barnhardt, Raymond (2011)
      School counselors in rural locations deal with many of the same issues and concerns of those in most urban areas, but have several additional challenges due to the geographic and demographic characteristics of their populations. The research in this dissertation investigated the specific challenges experienced by school counselors in the state of Alaska. All school counselors working in a rural public school were surveyed to determine what challenges they experienced, what resources they utilize, what additional resources they would like, and to discuss any information they believed would be helpful for a counselor about to enter the rural school setting. From the original 93 survey responses, 24 counselors were interviewed to provide further depth to the investigation. Analysis revealed similar challenges as discussed previously in the literature regarding rural counselor practice, but highlighted crisis situations, isolation variables, limited community resources, multiple roles, rural culture issues, and cultural issues. Alaska school counselors currently utilize a variety of resources to help them address the concerns in their communities. They did not request anything different than the resources they currently access, but rather wanted more of those resources. Recommendations are made for school counselors, school districts, state organizations, and counselor education training institutes.
    • Framing Complexity: Teachers And Students Use Of Technology In Alaska One To One Laptop Learning Environments

      Whicker, Robert E.; Monahan, John; Richey, Jean; Roehl, Roy; Eck, Norman; Crumley, Robert (2012)
      The topic for this dissertation is to investigate perceptions within the implementation of established one to one laptop learning programs in Alaska high schools. A primary purpose is to gain understanding of teacher and student perception of their technology use levels by establishing a level of adoption. A secondary purpose is to gain understanding of teacher perceptions regarding concerns and implementation concepts. The theoretical framework for this study used a concurrent mixed methods approach, beginning with a quantitative broad survey with supporting qualitative open-ended questions. The sample used for this study includes public high school teachers and students, who are part of a one-to-one laptop program in thirteen schools districts across Alaska. Analysis of frequencies of technology use and levels of proficiency for both students and teachers were made in areas of personal and classroom use. Teacher professional practice was also analyzed with an emphasis on professional development. Statistical analysis included analysis of variance of demographic measures and classroom use, correlation and regression of teachers' levels of proficiency. Findings indicated a mature implementation of one to one programs throughout the teacher population sample with teachers reporting high stages of concern and moderate levels of technology use focused on the students' use of technology for learning. Implementation recommendations indicated by this study include the use of a framework to measure program progress and to gather teacher voices through the life of a project, clear communication of program goals, and a professional development model suited toward teachers' needs. This study will provide a baseline of knowledge for future studies in Alaska.
    • From camps to communities: Neets'ąįį Gwich'in planning and development in a pre- and post-settlement context

      Stern, Charlene Barbara; Koskey, Michael; Leonard, Beth; Chapin, F. Stuart, III; Aruskevich, Kas (2018-05)
      This study focuses on the Neets'aii Gwich'in, whose traditional territory is located in the northeastern interior of Alaska, and their experiences with planning and development. Prior to settling into permanent villages, the Neets'ąįį lived in widely scattered camps moving in relation to seasonal subsistence resources. Equipped with extensive knowledge of their country, Neets'ąįį people knew at any given time where the best places for certain animals and resources were and thus would camp closer to those areas. According to Neets'ąįį oral history, life in the "those days" was preoccupied with basic survival. Planning ahead, being prepared, and adapting to changing conditions were some of the key strategies that enabled the Neets'ąįį to survive from one generation to the next in one of the harshest climates in the world. The past 170 years has brought unprecedented change to the Neets'ąįį. The socio-economic and political context which historically defined the experience of the Neets'ąįį shifted dramatically as a result of colonization, the establishment of permanent settlements and the ensuing need for community infrastructure. Today, the Neets'ąįį are centralized in two villages, Vashrąįį K'ǫǫ (Arctic Village) and Vįįhtąįį (Venetie), located within the boundaries of the 1.8 million-acre Venetie Indian Reserve. The transition from Neets'ąįį camps to permanent communities has introduced many new needs including landfills, roads, power generation, etc. Whereas Neets'ąįį ancestors traditionally used planning as a survival strategy, their descendants today use planning to attract external investment for much needed infrastructure. This dissertation explores the ways in which the Neets'ąįį Gwich'in have engaged in planning and development in a pre- and post-settlement context.
    • Honda country: relocalization through technology in Nanwalek Alaska

      DeHass, David; Nakazawa, Anthony; Koskey, Michael; Gerlach, Craig; Pullar, Gordon (2014-12)
      It should not be assumed that the introduction of a new technology automatically wipes out past cultural practices. Instead, it is often the case that these offerings are integrated into a current routine. For the Sugpiat of Nanwalek, Alaska, there is a constant need to negotiate between what to change and what to preserve. My research explores how a cultural group judges a new technology based upon shared boundaries and understandings. I examine how the decision to accept all-terrain vehicles (ATVs) has allowed for increased participation in subsistence practices, effective resource management, and material and emotional reunification with those things that went before. Many of the activities and "places that count" are no longer merely fragments of memory for many in the village; rather, they are physical and contemporary in their importance. In my dissertation, I define relocalization and demonstrate how relocalization was made possible through purposeful decision-making and adaptive traditions and did not simply occur because of the existence of ATVs and their random internalization.
    • An indigenous teacher preparation framework

      Tom, Lexie J.; John, Theresa; Barnhardt, Ray; Amarok, Barbara; Marker, Michael (2018-05)
      The result of this research is a framework to support Indigenous Teacher Preparation within the Native Studies department at Northwest Indian College (NWIC). I attempted to answer three main questions in the duration of this dissertation research. The first question is, how do we recreate an Indigenous method for teaching and learning in a modern educational institution? The second question is, what does a Native Studies faculty member need to be prepared to teach classes? The third question is, how do we measure learning? Participants for this research included elders from the Lummi community, Native Studies faculty members at NWIC, and administrators. As an Indigenous researcher, I have defined my own Indigenous epistemology and this guided my research. I have chosen a qualitative research design to assist me in answering these research questions. The data were analyzed and coded into main themes. This analysis produced teacher competencies and methods of measurement that will be used within the Indigenous teacher preparation framework. This framework is important to the future of the Native Studies Leadership program and NWIC.
    • Inland Tlingit of Teslin, Yukon: G̲aanax̲.Ádi and Kook̲hittaan clan origin stories for the immediate and clan family of Emma Joanne Shorty (nee Sidney)

      Shorty, Norma; Barnhardt, Ray; Taff, Alice; Leonard, Beth; Kaplan, Lawrence (2015-08)
      The purpose of my research is to learn the story of Mother's clan, and to document the processes of gathering knowledge about the clan connections between the G̲aanax̲.ádi and Kook̲hittaan from Teslin, Yukon, Canada. The objective of this thesis is to document the stories and the story-gathering processes of published and private holdings on my Mother's clan stories. The study includes published literature from indigenous and non-indigenous historians and oral history reviews, especially on those who have knowledge about the Kook̲hittaan and G̲aanax̲.ádi clans and have connections to the Inland Tlingit from Teslin, Yukon. This indigenous-led research focuses on my mother and her clan stories. I am an insider and an outsider to my culture. From an insider perspective I am privileged to hear, to learn, and to retell Mother's maternal clan stories. As a result of this research, Tlingit ways of documenting history are discovered and Tlingit research (literacy) frameworks are revealed. I learned that the Kook̲hittaan and G̲aanax̲.ádi clans are one. Our oral history is validated by face paint designs, petroglyphs and clan shirt designs. In their published work some non-indigenous ethnographers made changes to words and designs which distorted the indigenous record. This dissertation compares all possible information sources showing the heavier weight of evidence is provided by available indigenous sources. Colonization has greatly impacted the perpetuation of indigenous knowledge systems by referring to indigenous knowledge as "traditional" because the term tradition conjures up images of living in the past.
    • Iñupiat Ilitqusiat: inner views of our Iñupiaq values

      Topkok, Charles Sean Asiqłuq; Leonard, Beth; John, Theresa; Lewis, Jordan; Counceller, April (2015-12)
      Iñupiat Ilitqusiat: Inner Views of Our Iñupiaq Values examines how Iñupiat pass down elements of our cultural heritage to future generations. The research is community-driven by the Pavva Iñupiaq Dancers of Fairbanks, families with Iñupiaq children in their household, and other Iñupiat worldwide. My doctoral research addresses how we view each Iñupiat Ilitqusiat (Iñupiaq Values), how our Iñupiat Ilitqusiat have been passed down, and how we pass down our Iñupiaq cultural heritage to our future cultural-bearers. Participants talk about our Iñupiat Ilitqusiat to acknowledge that we are Iñupiat wherever we live. I assert that in order to conduct culturally appropriate research with Iñupiaq people, it is imperative to observe cultural protocols and values, to equally include Indigenous narrative history and Western literature in the review process, and to observe Iñupiaq methods and methodology when gathering data. I examined and applied the ways my ancestors have gathered and presented data, formalizing for academia an Iñupiaq way of conducting research. I have conducted 17 group interviews corresponding to the 17 Iñupiat Ilitqusiat. In my findings, I acknowledge that our Iñupiaq values help define our heritage. They are embedded in our lives and in our stories. They are in our spirit, passed down to us through our ancestors. Each Iñupiat Ilitqusiat converges with each other when we examine how each cultural value applies to our lives. We need to continue talking about our cultural values in every village to ensure our descendants live their cultural heritage.
    • Kids Getting Away With Learning: Student Perceptions Of Learning In One To One Laptop Programs

      Standley, Mark; Monahan, John; Crumley, Robert; Jorgensen, Spike; Lang, Rob; Richey, Jean; Roehl, Roy (2012)
      This research explores students' perceptions of learning in one to one laptop programs in rural Alaska. This research used constructing grounded theory methods by conducting five focus groups in rural high schools in order to gather and analyze data from the students themselves. The research intent was to let the students' words and experiences shape a new theory how about they learn with these laptop programs. From an epistemological standpoint the goal of this qualitative research was to create a more complete picture of learning in one to one programs using grounded data through gathering, analyzing, and working directly with the students in these programs as "co-participants" to learn from their perceptions of learning using laptops. The new literacies student develop through being 21st century learners were reflected in the student perceptions in one to one programs and challenge researchers to re-examine learning theory in light of the ubiquitous nature of digital learning. This research was part of a larger collaboration with the Tech Cohort (Appendix A) to conduct mixed methods research using the same population to create a more complete picture of the research topics and participants.
    • Pathway to Alaskan statehood: the historical narratives of Jack Coghill, Vic Fischer, Katie Hurley, and D.A. Bartlett, and their presence at the Alaska Constitutional Convention

      Drumhiller, Leslie; Barnhardt, Ray; Parson, Sean; Hardy, Cindy (2016-05)
      The aim of this thesis is to compare the commonalities and differences in the oral narratives of four participants of the Alaska Constitutional Convention, John B. “Jack” Coghill, Victor “Vic” Fischer, Katherine “Katie” Hurley, and Doris Ann “D.A.” Bartlett. Applying thematic analysis to the interviews, themes, or codes were extracted from the interviews and unified into code families: “family,” “work,” “Alaska Constitutional Convention,” and “Alaska Constitution,” with other code families supporting these four. The “Alaska Constitutional Convention” becomes the super code, or main theme of this thesis. The research explores three themes: non-partisan politics at the Alaska Constitutional Convention, the camaraderie among the delegates and staff at the Alaska Constitutional Convention, and gender differences among Coghill, Fischer, Hurley, and Bartlett.
    • Pedagogy for reading in rural Alaska: the effect of culturally relevant reading materials on student reading achievement in Chevak, Alaska

      Geiges, Beth J.; Leonard, Beth; Topkok, Sean; John, Theresa; Adams, Barbara (2017-12)
      This study used Culturally Relevant Reading materials (CRRM) with a proprietary, culturally relevant pedagogy for Reading. It was focused on results in Reading Achievement, both reading fluency and comprehension, involving 7th and 8th grade students in a twelve (12)-week program of Reading Language Arts. It was an exploratory sequential mixed methods study using a quasi-experimental design, with two student groups, A and B, experimental and control respectively. The results are situated within cultural expert views of Native perspectives on reading from the community as well as student surveys on motivation. Results from the study indicate that student achievement in Reading using the CRRM program, as measured by standardized tests, namely Edformation's AIMSweb® (2002) tests of both R-CBM and MAZE, met with similar results in student Reading achievement using a Western curricular program. Both control and experimental groups in the quasi-experimental, exploratory sequential mixed methods study showed significant growth in Reading achievement in both fluency and comprehension, on standardized tests over a 12-week interval. Results from the study showed students in the CRRM program showed no significantly greater growth in reading comprehension or fluency during the study, as measured by AIMSweb® tests of MAZE and R-CBM. Student survey results showed increases in student motivation to read, enjoyment of reading class, and desire to read CRRM. Written questionnaires from community members outlined criteria for student success in reading. The results indicate that Alaska Native culturally relevant materials and teaching techniques can be used interchangeably with Western curricular materials in Alaska Native village schools with expectation of similar success in student Reading achievement. Students are eager to have CRRM in Language Arts classes, and the community is encouraged by the promising results.