Learning about Aboriginal contexts: the reading circle approach

J Nurs Educ. 2008 Jul;47(7):324-6. doi: 10.3928/01484834-20080701-01.


As more opportunities arise for nursing students to obtain experience in community sites, they will be called on to practice in culturally appropriate ways more often. Although nurses remain challenged by the range of populations needing differentiated approaches, Aboriginal cultural contexts deserve special attention. Nurse educators must help students increase their understanding of Aboriginal life and ways of knowing. One way to facilitate this understanding is through a learning approach called reading circles. Reading circles offer a structure in the classroom for students to interact about ideas or readings. The reading circle process is congruent with Aboriginal ways of learning, which emphasize working in circle, with each member having a role and an equal chance to be heard. Aboriginal students in the class may be particularly comfortable with this learning method. This article describes specific steps for incorporating the reading circle approach into the nurse education classroom.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Attitude to Health / ethnology
  • Cultural Competency
  • Cultural Diversity
  • Education, Nursing, Baccalaureate / methods*
  • Group Processes*
  • Health Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice
  • Humans
  • Indians, North American / ethnology*
  • Medicine in Literature
  • Narration
  • Nursing Research / education
  • Reading*
  • Role
  • Students, Nursing / psychology*
  • Teaching Materials
  • Transcultural Nursing / education*