King, L. (2011). Finding agency and voice as an Indigenous doctoral student. Journal of Australian Indigenous Issues,14(1), 9-18. Australia: Journal of Australian Indigenous Issues.
The paper reflects on the journey of an Indigenous doctoral student and her experiences of working within the Western system of knowledge production. The author argues that, for Indigenous researchers, keeping true to their identity and developing Indigenous research methodologies is critical - particularly if Indigenous participation levels in higher education are to be improved. This paper draws on personal experiences to highlight the need for universities to take positive steps to overcome discrimination, remove oppressive barriers in doctoral research and provide constructive critical feedback to students. Through reflective analysis, the author identifies key issues for Indigenous doctoral students, including the need for support, the influence of Western knowledge systems and attitudes, the maintenance of relationships with local Indigenous communities and the university, and the need to understand the cultural and family responsibilities that influence Indigenous students and their families. This paper also proposes strategies for increasing Indigenous participation and completion of doctoral research.
School of Education
Access may be restricted.