Indigenous Formal Curriculum Grant


Western’s Office of the Provost, in collaboration with the Office Indigenous Initiatives and Centre for Teaching and Learning, continue to build upon the strategic commitments articulated in Western’s Indigenous Strategic Plan (ISP), and the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s (TRC) Calls to Action (CTA). 

All Western Faculties are invited to apply to the Indigenous Formal Curriculum Grant (IFCG) to support two-year curriculum change projects at the program level. The purpose of the Indigenous Formal Curriculum Grant is to advance the implementation of the Indigenous Strategic Plan, specifically the goals of ‘Excelling in Indigenous teaching, curriculum and learning’, and ‘Strengthening Indigenous community partnerships and connections,’ as well as implement the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action.

In keeping with these strategic priorities, Western’s Provost Office invites proposals for one time, two year grants up to a maximum of $40,000 ($20,000 per year) to support the advancement of innovation in Indigenous formal curriculum change at Western's main campus. Successful grant recipients will be required to submit a final report detailing outcomes and spending against budget with two years of receipt.  Successful grants will also be required to participate in knowledge transfer initiatives with the goal of sharing best practices.

The Curriculum Grant recognizes the chronic gap in Indigenous and decolonial pedagogical approaches across many disciplines and fields of study, and offers opportunity for academic teams to review programs, courses, and offerings to create new curriculum and/or embed Indigenous perspectives into existing curriculum.



The purpose of the Indigenous Curriculum Grant is to advance the implementation of Western’s ISP, specifically the Indigenous Strategic Priorities of ‘Excelling in Indigenous teaching, curriculum and learning’, and ‘Strengthening Indigenous community partnerships and connections.

In keeping with these strategic priorities, Western invites proposals for one time, two year grants up to a maximum of $40,000 ($20,000 per year) that will support the advancement of innovation in Indigenous learning in formal curriculum offerings at Western.


Potential Initiatives may include:

- Support a team to develop/enhance/review/evaluate existing academic programs to embed Indigenous content, perspectives, and ways of knowing into the curriculum;
- Support faculty members/instructors in creating and/or piloting new modules, courses and/or program offerings in an Indigenous area;
- Support building capacity of instructors to respectfully and effectively teach Indigenous perspectives, ways of knowing, and worldviews at the “cultural interface” (Nakata, 2011) of divergent and sometimes contested knowledges;
- Develop new community-based learning partnerships with Indigenous communities and/or organizations in the area of teaching and learning; and
- Develop and pilot new classroom or online educational materials and strategies in Indigenous teaching and learning.

*Proposals must demonstrate direct ties to formal curriculum outcomes at programmatic levels that will be instituted in ongoing and sustainable ways


One-time, two-year grants up to a maximum of $40,000 ($20,000 per year) will be distributed on a competitive basis to Faculties, departments, schools, and programs to facilitate curriculum changes at programmatic levels. Funded initiatives must demonstrate Faculty and/or department support through in-kind or other contributions.

Projects will be required to report back annually within the two years of receiving the funding.

Funding can cover release time for faculty members to do curriculum work, hire students to complete literature reviews, host community engagements, purchase materials with public viewing rights, and so forth.

The Indigenous Formal Curriculum Grant will not fund:

- Non-academic units and projects such as professional development activities that are not directly tied to formal curriculum change commitments and outcomes;
- Major capital expenditures related to renovations or additions to physical infrastructure;
- Research activities, including community-based research activities; or
- Existing projects and initiatives that are already underway unless they are to be significantly enhanced, reviewed, and/or evaluated.



All Western Faculties (departments, schools, and academic programs) are invited to submit proposals to receive funding. All proposals must be reviewed and endorsed by a letter of support from the applicable Dean and Department Chair. If more than one academic unit is involved (e.g., partnership between academic units), signatures from all associated academic unit heads (a Dean and Chairs from each unit) are required, and a lead unit must be identified to receive the funds and be responsible for financial reporting.


Proposals must be submitted using the application format guidelines below. Applications must be submitted via email by the deadline May 30, 2022 to adding “Indigenous Curriculum Grant” to the email subject line.

Potential applicants are encouraged to review the resources provided in the final section of this document, and to attend an information session to learn more about the application process and criteria.

The Office of Indigenous Initiatives’ Indigenous Curriculum and Pedagogy Advisor and the Centre for Teaching and Learning’s Educational Developers are available to assist applicants with questions; however we respectfully ask that you contact the Offices as early as possible in the application process when accessing supports. All proposals will be adjudicated by a Committee Chaired by myself. Members of the Selection Committee will include Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples, including the VP (Academic) or designate, and Indigenous teaching fellow.


Indigenous Curriculum Grant Call for Proposals

March 1, 2022

Online Information Sessions (2)

March 21, 2022 / May 11 2022*
*postponed, new date: May 12

Application Deadline  

May 30, 2022

Adjudication by Committee

May 31 – June 10

Notification to Successful Applicants

June 13

Release of Funds

July 1

Deadline to complete Proposed Initiative

within 2 years depending on the proposal timeline

Submission of Final Report    

1 month after project ends

Register here for March 21, 2022 (12pm-1pm) Information Session I

Register here for new date: May 12, 2022 (12pm-1pm) Information Session II 


- Strong background, description and rationale of the curriculum change commitment and process (e.g., addresses gaps and identifies some key areas of exploratory focus and commitment).
- Alignment with Western’s ISP and the TRC’s CTA including but not limited to strengthening and building relationships with Indigenous communities; bringing Indigenous Peoples’ voices, perspectives, and ways of knowing into disciplines and programming; supporting Indigenous pedagogies, land-based learning and/or experiential learning.
- Clear achievable commitments to inclusion tied to formal learning outcomes and goals with timely and measurable outcomes.


Priority will be given to initiatives that:

- Prioritize the proactive inclusion of Indigenous and decolonial perspectives and approaches to learning/unlearning within formal curriculum and academic programming priorities;
- Prioritize Indigenous theories, methodologies, and epistemologies in curriculum change processes;
- Prioritize Indigenous ethical approaches to developing curriculum resources and working with Indigenous Peoples and ways of knowing in non-appropriative and extractive ways;
- Demonstrate a commitment to engaging Indigenous experts in the field of study, and applied areas when helpful including appropriately anticipating compensating individuals for their time and expertise;
- Demonstrate previous experience and expertise working with Indigenous communities;
- Demonstrate interdisciplinary collaborations and opportunities;
- Demonstrate how the curriculum will be sustained in ongoing program offerings in the future;
- Provide positive impact for many people (e.g., students); and
- Positively benefit Indigenous Peoples.



Successful grants will be required to submit a final report detailing outcomes and spending against budget with two years of receipt.  Successful grants will also be required to participate in knowledge transfer initiatives with the goal of sharing best practices.


- Western’s Indigenous Strategic Plan
- Guide for Working with Indigenous Students
- Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) of Canada Report & Calls to Action
- Maamwi Gizekewag: Western Indigenous Curriculum & Learning Report (2021)



  1. Brief description to identify the academic lead and team members that will be part of the curriculum process (200 words)
  2. Brief description of the academic program under consideration (provide brief history, high level offerings and identify gaps and opportunities for Indigenous and decolonial inclusions in the curriculum) (200 words).
  3. Summary of the proposed curriculum process including main activities, timeline, roles and responsibilities, and potential formal curriculum outcomes that could emerge (500 words)
  4. Describe how this curriculum initiative will contribute and expand Indigenization and/or decolonizing processes at Western, including:
    1. What are the current and potential areas for curriculum expansion/exploration, and how are they tied to TRC and Indigenous perspectives?
    2. How are Indigenous voices informing the curriculum process?
    3. How have Indigenous community/communities been engaged in conceptualizing this plan? Do you plan to engage other experts in the field? If so, who are they, and how will they be engaged?
    4. What are the plans to ensure the successful delivery and evaluation of the curriculum occurs? (500 words)
  5. Describe how the proposed curriculum change plan aligns with the evaluation criteria. (200 words)
  6. Describe the Faculty, school or program’s commitment to ensuring the long-term sustainability of the Indigenous curriculum beyond the funding period, including commitment to ongoing resources (for example, covering the costs of travel to a community as part of a field course partnership). (200 words)
  7. Provide a detailed budget, including other funds from different sources that will contribute to this proposal process. Explicitly outline in-kind contributions.
  8. Describe how the proposed initiative will be evaluated and measured in terms of how it defines and measures learning outcomes and assessment. (200 words)
  9. A knowledge mobilization plan that outlines how this initiative will be disseminated within and/or beyond Western or any other relevant information related to the proposed initiative. (200 words)