Best Practices in Teaching about Racism and Colonialism: Pedagogies for Pursuing Racial Justice and Decolonization

Conference Highlights, Panels and Plenary, Professional Development

This session examines best practices in teaching about racism and colonialism, primarily in a Canadian post-secondary context. How can universities become both sites of deep learning and critical reflection and sites for advancing racial justice and decolonization? Leading instructors in the field will discuss what they have learned about effective approaches to designing reading lists and assignments, creating inclusive and equitable classroom environments, incorporating Indigenous knowledges and perspectives, and facilitating meaningful discussions around such topics as whiteness, blackness, xenophobia, settler colonialism, antiracism, Indigenous resurgence, and reconciliation. Questions concerning academic freedom, instructor/student power dynamics, the management of conflicts and emotions, and the particular challenges facing Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour (BIPOC) faculty and students in such courses also may be addressed.

This session is sponsored by the Canadian Sociological Association Equity Subcommittee.


  • Lynne Davis, Trent University
  • Rachel La Touche, University of Toronto
  • Eloy Rivas Sanchez, Carleton University
  • Vanessa Watts, McMaster University
Tags: Indigenous Studies, Race and Ethnicity, Teaching Sociology

Organizers: Jeffrey Denis, McMaster University, Gülden Özcan, University of Lethbridge, Irene Shankar, Mount Royal University, Xiaobei Chen, Carleton University