Women's and Gender Studies (WGST) 304

Issues in Aboriginal Women's Health and Wellness (Revision 2)

WGST 304 course cover

WGST 304 replaces WMST 304

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Delivery Mode: Individualized study online or grouped study

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Social Science

Prerequisite: None

Precluded Course: WMST 304. (WGST 304 cannot be taken for credit if credit has already been obtained for WMST 304).

Faculty: Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences

Women's & Gender Studies home page

WGST 304 has a Challenge for Credit option.

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WGST 304 looks at a variety of topics related to Aboriginal women's health and wellness. Aboriginal women's health and wellness issues will be examined across physical, intellectual, emotional, and spiritual dimensions, giving credence to both animate and inanimate matter and to the creator, who is considered to be at the center of all that exists. The Aboriginal way of knowing, being, and living (Aboriginal epistemology) is central to understanding Aboriginal women's health and wellness issues. The wholistic nature of an Aboriginal world view is present in all course units.


  • Unit 1: Introduction to Aboriginal Women's Health and Wellness
  • Unit 2: Aboriginal Women's Health in a Historical Context
  • Unit 3: Aboriginal Cultures, Identity, and Health
  • Unit 4: Aboriginal Women's Familial Issues and Health
  • Unit 5: Contemporary Aboriginal Women's Health and Wellness Issues
  • Unit 6: Long-term Effects of Colonization on Aboriginal Women's Health and Wellness
  • Unit 7: Aboriginal Women's Health and Healing Ways
  • Unit 8: Conclusions: Where Do We Go from Here?


To receive credit for WGST 304, you must achieve a minimum, overall grade of D (50 percent) or better for the entire course. The weighting of the composite grade is as follows:

Assessment Activity Credit Weight Date Due
Assignment 1: Three Short Essays 15% After Unit 2
Assignment 2: Midterm Take-home Test 30% After Unit 4
Assignment 3: Research Proposal and Outline 20% After Unit 7
Assignment 4: Research Paper 35% After Unit 8
Total 100% of final grade  

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

Course Materials


Anderson, K., & Lawrence, B. (Eds.). (2003). Strong women stories: Native vision and community survival. Toronto: Sumach Press.

Fontaine, T. (2010). Broken Circle, In Broken circle: The dark legacy of Indian residential schools: A memoir. (pp. 21–37). British Columbia: Heritage House Publishing Co.

Waldram, J. B., Herring, D. A., & Young, T. K. (2006). Aboriginal health in Canada: Historical, cultural, and epidemiological perspectives (2nd ed.). Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Other materials

The balance of the course is delivered online using a Student Manual, Course Information, and Study Guide.

Challenge for Credit Overview

The Challenge for Credit process allows you to demonstrate that you 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 about Challenge for Credit can be found in the Undergraduate Calendar.

Challenge Evaluation

To receive credit for the WGST 304 challenge registration, you must achieve a grade of at least D (50 percent) or greater on the research essay to be eligible to write the challenge examination. A cumulative average of 50 percent on both activities is required. Credit is awarded on a pass/fail basis only.

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 2, October 8, 2014.

View previous syllabus