NDSU Distance & Continuing Education (DCE)

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Course Descriptions

Introduction to Native American Studies

EDUC 600

This course focuses on the socio-historical and structural analysis of race and ethnic relations among groups in the US and other global settings. Emphasis is placed on theories or oppression and other arrangements for integrating economic, political and cultural factors involved in the mergence and perpetuation of inequality among peoples located in multicultural environments. Students should gain a thorough understanding of the theories, concepts and experiences that shape group relationships in American society and the world. Students should come to understand present relationships by assessing past patterns of minority-majority group relations and the relationships between anyone group's experiences and all the others. This course will examine various aspects of Native American culture, including myths, religion, and customs. Interest will be given to Native American interaction with Europeans and the conduct of several European explorers. The settlement of North America by colonists and their treatment of native people, the impact of western expansion on the Indian nations and the establishment of reservations will also be discussed.


By the end of the course, students should have a good grasp of how historical and current social structures create our understanding of nationality and race relations. Students should understand ways in which these relationships are socially constructed and understand they are not set in stone. An understanding of the value of multiculturalism will be essential to this process and knowledge should erode any notions of cultural superiority. Class will be divided between lectures, discussion, presentations and films. Explain how the American Constitution is constructed on the patterns of the Iroquois Constitution. Describe the effect of the European on the Native Americans. Describe the impact of the explorers on the Native Americans they met. Demonstrate improved written, reading research and speaking skills. Describe life on an Indian reservation today in terms of economic, social, political and health problems.

l) To introduce and discuss the basic concepts and terminology in the field of race and ethnic relations and examine and discuss within the sociological framework, race and ethnic relations in other countries.

2) To examine and discuss the extent to which pluralist or assimilations models "fit" various groups in the U.S.

3) To explain the sociological approach in the study of race and ethnic relations.

4) To describe structural inequality when diverse groups live together in one society.

5) To examine and discuss social conflict as an inherent characteristic of race and ethnic relations.

6) To review and explain the socio-historical experience of various racial and ethnic relations.             

7) To examine and discuss within the sociological framework, race and ethnic relations in other countries.

8) To compare and contrast other countries solutions to racial and ethnic conflict with the U.S. experience.

9) To explain the rising significance or race and ethnic relations in a global perspective.