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UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The effects of a multicultural curriculum on First Nations pride in heritage, self-esteem and rejection of the beliefs of an involuntary minorit Sipsas, Joyce B.

Abstract

The purpose of this study is to determine whether a sample of First Nations high school students holds the beliefs of an involuntary minority and to determine whether a curriculum which demonstrates that First Nations people can succeed will lead to an increase in the rejection of the beliefs of an involuntary minority, and an increase in self- esteem and pride in heritage. This study is a quasi- experimental design carried out in a natural setting. One experimental group and one control group from a Lower Mainland high school participated in the study. The experimental group consisted of 10 subjects and the control group consisted of 9 subjects. The groups, which were not randomly selected, were pre- and post- tested using the Culture-Free Self-Esteem Inventory by Battle (1981) and the Pride in Heritage Measure by Kehoe and Echols (1986). All subjects also participated in an interview, which consisted of 13 questions aimed at yielding responses indicating whether or not the subjects hold the beliefs of an involuntary minority. These interviews took place prior to, and following, the treatment. Subjects in the experimental group participated in a treatment, which consisted of a multicultural curriculum demonstrating that First Nations people can succeed. Due to the numerous threats to the design validity of the study, it is not possible to assess the efficacy of the treatment. However, pre-test measures did provide information about the measures and the sample. The self-esteem of the subjects was found to be in the intermediate range. The mean for 19 subjects was 17.7 out of a possible score of 25. Their mean on the Pride in Heritage Measure was 41.6 (n=19) out of a possible score of 48; thus, their score was high. The results of the interviews suggest that 13 subjects do hold the beliefs of an involuntary minority. Although many difficulties were encountered during the conduct of this study, it did accomplish some things. Furthermore, it may have contributed to the development of an interview schedule to determine whether or not individuals from a group known as an involuntary minority do in fact hold the beliefs attributed to an involuntary minority.

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