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History Research Guide


This guide provides OC Library and web resources related to Indigenous research methodology as well as search strategies on this and related topics. 


 In "What is indigenous research methodology?", Shawn Hunt (2001) writes:

"...Indigenous research needs to reflect Indigenous contexts and world views: that is, they must come from an Indigenous paradigm rather than an Indigenous perspective.

One major difference between the dominant paradigms and an Indigenous paradigm is that the dominant paradigms build on the fundamental belief that knowledge is an individual entity: the researcher is an individual in search of knowledge, knowledge is something that is gained, and therefore knowledge may be owned by an individual. An Indigenous paradigm comes from the fundamental belief that knowledge is relational. Knowledge is shared with all of creation. It is not just interpersonal relationships, not just with the research subjects I may be working with, but it is a relationship with all of creation. It is with the cosmos, it is with the animals, with the plants, with the earth that we share this knowledge. It goes beyond the idea of individual knowledge to the concept of relational knowledge."

See also: Indigenous Data Sovereignty guide.

Finding Resources at OC Library

IMPORTANT: the dominant structure for organizing information is from a western perspective, for this reason you may need to use outdated (sometimes offensive) terminology to find resources; do not hesitate to contact us for assistance navigating this.

Combine keywords related to the concept of Indigenous identity with keywords related to your area of interest.

For example:



"First Nations"



"Indians of North America"



Name of Nation or Community (e.g. Secwépemc)


"Research methodology"

"Research ethics"

"Traditional knowledge"

"Research methods"


"Research theories"

"Research protocols"

"Cultural protocols"


Search Tips:

  • Use quotation marks to search for a phrase (e.g. "traditional knowledge").

  • Use an asterisk to search for words with the same stem (e.g.method* retrieves method, methods, methodology, methodologies).

  • Terminology changes over time. You many need to search for alternative spellings of a word, for example: Sto:lo, Stó:lô, Staulo, Stahlo or you may need to search for alternate words, for example: Kwakiutl/Kwakwaka'wakw or Nootka/Nuu-chah-nulth

Subject headings are a tool designed to help researchers find similar materials. These are only some examples of the many subject headings that Okanagan College Library uses. Spend a few minutes exploring them when you find a book in the catalogue that supports your research.

Search by Subject Terms

  • research methodology
  • Indigenous knowledge system
  • Indigenous research methods
  • Indigenous research methodologies
  • Indigenous practices
  • Indigenous traditional knowledge

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Research Ethics

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