Political Science (POLI) 311

Aboriginal Politics and Governments (Revision 4)

POLI 311 Course website

Revision 4 is closed for registrations, replaced by current version

View previous syllabus

Delivery Mode: Individualized study online or grouped study

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Social Science

Prerequisite: None

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Political Science home page

POLI 311 has a Challenge for Credit option.

Detailed Syllabus (PDF)

Course website

check availability


POLI 311 examines the complex issues associated with Aboriginal peoples and their politics. The central issues of this course include the history and context of Aboriginal government and political movements, and the political goals of Aboriginal peoples today. Political Science 311 will help you recognize the efforts of Aboriginal peoples to create and recreate their governing institutions, which is essential for understanding Aboriginal politics. This course will also help you understand the policies of the various levels of government in Canada, particularly the federal government, concerning the circumstances, rights, and self-determination of Canada's Aboriginal peoples.


Unit 1: Introduction to Aboriginal Politics and Government

Unit 2: Aboriginal Governments in Canada: The Context

Unit 3: Aboriginal Governments in Practice

Unit 4: Intergovernmental Relations

Unit 5: Special Issues Related to Aboriginal Governments

Unit 6: Treaty Making, Land Claim Agreements, and Aboriginal Governments

Unit 7: Aboriginal Governments in Canada: Future Directions


To receive credit for POLI 311, you will be based on your performance on three written assignments: two essays and a exam. You must achieve a grade of at least 60 percent on Assignment 3, and an overall course grade of at least “D” (50 percent). The weighting of the assignments is as follows:

Assignment 1: Essay Assignment 2: Essay Assignment 3: Exam Total
30% 30% 40% 100%

To learn more about assignments and examinations, please refer to Athabasca University's online Calendar.

Course Materials


Frideres, J. S., and R. R. Gadacz. 2012. Aboriginal Peoples in Canada. 9th ed. Toronto: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Other materials

The course materials include a study guide, student manual and a reading file.

Challenge for Credit Course Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows students to demonstrate that they have acquired a command of the general subject matter, knowledge, intellectual and/or other skills that would normally be found in a university level course.

Full information for the Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

To receive credit for the POLI 311 challenge registration, you must achieve a grade of at least “D” (50 percent) on the examination.

Undergraduate Challenge for Credit Course Registration Form

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice. Courses offered by other delivery methods may vary from their individualized-study counterparts.

Opened in Revision 4, April 11, 2008.

View previous syllabus