Atuarfitsialak: Greenland's cultural compatible reform

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In 2002, Greenlandic reform leaders launched a comprehensive, nation-wide reform to create culturally compatible education. Greenland's reform work spans the entire educational system and includes preschool through higher education. To assist their efforts, reform leaders adopted the Standards for Effective Pedagogy developed at the Center for Research on Education, Diversity, and Excellence (CREDE). The standards are principles of effective teaching and learning that have been researched in many other indigenous communities. This study investigated the early stages of Greenland's reform work of the public school to understand why reform leaders adopted the CREDE standards, and what constraints, if any, the standards posed in the Greenlandic context. The findings suggest the reform was initiated to further decolonize Greenland as a former colony of Denmark. The standards were adopted to assist in this process by increasing Greenlandic students' linguistic abilities, strengthening native culture and identity, and improving Greenland's labor market.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)819-836
Number of pages18
JournalInternational Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 2012
Externally publishedYes


  • Greenland
  • cultural compatibility
  • educational reform
  • self-determination


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