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Noongar language and culture showcased on a global online stage

Media release

Online learners from across the globe will have the unique opportunity to learn about the language and culture of the Noongar people of Western Australia through Curtin University’s latest Massive Open Online Course (MOOC).

The free MOOC, titled Noongar Language and Culture, is run through Curtin’s Centre for Aboriginal Studies, and consists of six modules that will help learners develop an awareness and appreciation for Noongar culture.

Professor Marion Kickett, Director of Curtin’s Centre for Aboriginal Studies said the course will take learners on a journey through Noongar boodja (country) where they will hear personal experiences from Noongar guides.

“Noongar people have lived in the South West of Western Australia for more than 45,000 years, and this MOOC aims to help people better understand the richness of Noongar history and culture to pave the way for a brighter future,” Professor Kickett said.

“Over the years, ancient wisdom and culture have guided the Noongar people through their interaction with the land, nature and with one another, and we are delighted to share these experiences and connections with a global audience.

“We hope this course enhances cultural understanding and respect for Noongar people, but also for the wider Aboriginal community.”

Participants will be introduced to a range of conversational Noongar words and phrases, and be taught the importance of country to the Noongar people, key events in Noongar history, and expressions of Noongar culture through art, music, dance and spiritual beliefs.

Curtin University Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic Professor Jill Downie said the MOOC offered a unique and valuable opportunity for a global audience to enrich themselves in Western Australia’s Noongar culture.

“Western Australia has a vast history and Noongar culture holds great significance to the cultural heritage of the State, and to Curtin, as the University is situated on Noongar country,” Professor Downie said.

“MOOCs provide innovative learning opportunities for people around the world and we are delighted that Western Australia’s Noongar history and culture will be promoted on a global scale through this new course.”

The Noongar Language and Culture MOOC commences on May 14, 2018, and participants can enrol now.

For further information and to enrol, visit: https://www.edx.org/course/noongar-language-and-culture

The development of the Noongar Language and Culture MOOC was funded by the Paul Andrew Digby Robinson philanthropic bequest to support under-privileged Aboriginal children by way of research projects, training programs and programs for the preservation of Aboriginal culture.