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Repositioning within indigenous discourses of transformation and self-determination

This thesis reflectively and critically examines a series of research case studies initiated by a research-whānau. It explores the thinking, experiences and reflections of this research-whānau, as they worked to enhance the educational achievement of Māori students. Authorship of the thesis was undertaken by me (Mere Berryman). However, the methodology involved a collaborative, retrospective and critical reflection of research-whānau experiences and thinking, in the light of the research findings and experiences since the inception of this research-whānau in 1991. In the course of this work, the research-whānau have been able to explore what it has meant to put the principles of kaupapa Māori research into practice while working within a mainstream organisation (Specialist Education Services then the Ministry of Education). Our research work has involved repositioning ourselves from dependence on Western research methodologies to a better understanding and application of kaupapa Māori conceptualisations of research. The thesis begins by identifying mainstream and kaupapa Māori events that have historically and still continue to impact upon Māori students' educational experiences. These events provide the wider context for the work of this research-whānau at the interface of Te Ao Māori and Te Ao Pākehā, and for the 11 case studies that exemplify changes in our thinking and research practice over a period of 15 years. The thesis employs an indigenous (and specifically Māori) worldview as the framework for description, critical reflection, and theorising around these case studies. Common themes are collaboratively co-constructed then each theme is explained in relation to relevant Māori theory. The thesis concludes with the shifts in theorising and practice made by the research-whānau during the course of our work as we sought to contribute in ways that were more transformative and self-determining. We argue that these shifts in theorising and practice are also required of others if we are to change the status quo and contribute constructively to improving Māori students' potential.
Type of thesis
Berryman, M. (2008). Repositioning within indigenous discourses of transformation and self-determination (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)). The University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10289/2565
The University of Waikato
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