Engaging Indigenous Students


Book Chapter


Wright, E. & Shotton, H. J.


This chapter provides an understanding of who Indigenous Peoples are in the U.S., their relationship to higher education, and recommendations for designing meaningful, decolonial student engagement praxis. It begins with providing substantive contextual information about Indigenous Peoples. Theories and concepts key to (re)framing Indigenous students’ journeys to and through higher education follows. Moving away from the deficit-oriented perspective that blames Indigenous students for their perceived failures in education, we then offer an analysis of epistemological and structural issues facing Indigenous students as a way to reorient our thinking about higher education’s responsibilities to decolonize its epistemologies, methodologies, and methods of engagement with Indigenous students. We end this chapter by identifying multiple paths to nurturing Indigenous student engagement in higher education.


Wright, E. K., & Shotton, H. J. (2019). Engaging Indigenous Students. In S. J. Quaye, S. R. Harper, & S. L. Pendakur (Eds.), Student Engagement in Higher Education: Theoretical Perspectives and Practical Approaches for Diverse Populations (3rd ed.). Routledge.