Alaska Native Studies
Students may select one of two areas to complete the requirements for the minor; a policy focus or a language focus. Both of these areas emphasize the dynamic nature of Alaska Native peoples and cultures, and the variety of courses provides a meaningful understanding for native and non-native students alike.
The Associate of Arts (AA) in Alaska Native Studies provides students with a critical and dynamic perspective on Alaska Native cultures, histories, politics and organizations. This AA provides a valuable opportunity for students interested in exploring their options in higher education and/or employment with an Alaska Native organization.
Many students find a passion for Alaska Native Studies and delve into interesting research topics, ranging from the perspectives on kinship, philosophy, symbolism, and storytelling to examining the psychological and cultural perspectives of human development and well-being of indigenous peoples.
Alaska Native Studies Fall 2023 Courses: Enroll Today!
AKNS A101F Elementary Dena'ina
4 credits via zoom T/R 5:30-7:10 p.m.. Instructor: Donita Slawson
Introductory course for students with little or no prior knowledge of the Dena'ina
Athabascan language. Develops listening, speaking, reading and writing skills in Dena'ina
for effective communication at the elementary level. Addresses history of Alaska Native
languages and cultures.
Special Note: Class conducted in the Dena'ina language
AKNS/MUS A215 Music of Alaska Natives & Peoples of Northern Regions
3 credits Thursday 5:30-8:15 pm Instructor: Maria Williams
Explores music and dance practices of Alaska Native and Indigenous peoples of the circumpolar north by region and culture group. Interdisciplinary methods will be used to examine the historical and social dynamics behind changing musical and cultural traditions. Fundamentals of ethnomusicology theory and research methods will be introduced.
AKNS A230 Oral Traditions of Alaska Native People
T/R 1-2:15 Instructor: Haliehana Stepetin
Introduces Alaska Native oral traditions, both the stories told by different Alaska Native cultures and the indigenous languages that convey those stories. Examines the role of oral traditions in sharing knowledge and beliefs in Alaska Native cultures, the importance of indigenous languages in conveying ideas, the translation of oral traditions into recorded or printed media, and contemporary settings where oral traditions continue.
You are encouraged to consult with an academic advisor, as well as any other faculty members concerning your course of study at UAA.