The impact of the Higher School Certificate Aboriginal Studies course: Aboriginal students' perceptions

Year: 2005

Author: Wray, Debra, Craven, Rhonda, Munns, Geoff

Type of paper: Refereed paper

The future for New South Wales Aboriginal secondary students and, their attainment of the Higher School Certificate (HSC), could be pivotal to their participation in the HSC Aboriginal Studies course. There are schools in which the Aboriginal Studies HSC Course: is highly valued; meets the needs of Aboriginal students; promotes social justice and Reconciliation; and facilitates school community involvement in the curriculum. Via such courses Aboriginal students have an opportunity to see their people and community as the central positive focus of a school subject; and 'a place' where Aboriginal students are able to receive cultural affirmation. This paper presents the preliminary results of a study examining the impact of the Aboriginal Studies HSC course on the self-concept of Aboriginal students; their perceptions of the strengths and limitations of the course; and the relation between 'belonging as an Aboriginal person' and 'achieving as an Aboriginal student'.