How and why might we incorporate spirituality into tertiary education? Ka pēhea, he aha hoki, e whakauru ai i te wairuatanga ki te mātauranga matua?
Māori have long recognised that wairua, spirit, is a fundamental part of life and essential to wellbeing. Wairua has traditionally been excluded from tertiary education but this is changing, with increasing recognition of the importance of including spirituality in health and education. Principal Lecturer Katrina Le Cong has recently undertaken research exploring how we are incorporating wairua into tertiary education and what the outcomes are for tauira (learners).
Katrina (takata Tiriti) used an action research methodology, working in partnership with a takata whenua co-researcher Aroha Ngatai. Five hui were held with six learner participants. Participants engaged in a whakawhiti kōrero process discussing their developing understanding of wairua and deciding on weekly actions to add, remove, modify, or notice within the classroom. These actions were then incorporated by the researchers and reflected on in the following hui.
Analysis of the hui data revealed three themes: Understanding Wairua, Whanaukataka, and Drive to Act. The following recommendations emerged:
- Incorporating wairua in tertiary education is essential for teaching that is truly culturally responsive and for equality in success rates between Māori tauira and non-Māori tauira.
- Tertiary educators should embrace their own wairua, to develop their understanding.
- Start with an orientation programme that emphasises whakawhanaukataka.
- Using te reo Māori with correct pronunciation, reciting karakia in a way that upholds the mana of the words, joyfully singing waiata, and embracing mātauraka Māori, contribute to an environment that is safe and enhancing of wairua.
- Create regular opportunities for tauira to connect inside and outside the classroom.
- Honour time and space, for example opportunities for reflection before expecting response, space to move into and then on from a topic.
- Be aware how wairua can be hurt, for example by heavy topics, and use strategies to provide for healing of wairua.
Katrina hopes that these recommendations will guide the embracing and weaving of wairua into all tertiary education spaces and practices. This will contribute to see all flourish in the meaningful and transformational process of tertiary education.
- Read more in Katrina's Master of Occupational Therapy thesis
- See Katrina's profile
- Find more Social Services research
- Browse more Education & Employability research
Kua roa a ngāi Māori e mōhio ana i te hiranga o te wairua ki te hauora o te tangata. I ngā wā o mua, kua unuhia te wairua i te mātauranga matua, heoi, kei te huri haere te ao, ka mōhio haere i te hiranga hei whakauru i te wairuatanga i te mātauranga hauora. He rangahau hou e whakamahia ana e Pūkenga Matua Katrina Le Cong e pā ana ki te whakaurunga i te wairua ki te mātauranga matua, ā, he aha ngā hua mō ngā tauira.
Ka whakamahi a Katrina (he tangata Tiriti) i tētahi tukanga rangahau hohe, e mahi tahi ana ki tētahi kairangahau tangata whenua, ko Aroha Ngatai tērā. E rima ngā hui, ā, tokoono ngā kaiwhakauru. I whakawhiti kōrero ngā kaiwhakauru e pā ana ki ā rātou māramatanga i te wairua, i whakatau hoki i ētahi mahi kia tāpiri, kia unu, kia whakarerekē, kia kite rānei i te karaehe. Kātahi ka whakaurua ēnei mahi e ngā kairangahau, ka whai whakaaro i ngā hui i whai ake.
Nā te tātari i te raraunga hui i whakaputa ai i ngā kaupapa e toru: ko te Understanding Wairua, ko te Whanaukataka, me te Drive to Act. Kātahi ka putahia ēnei tūtohu:
- Ko te whakauru wairua ki te mātauranga matua tētahi momo hiranga mō ngā mahi whakaako hei mahi tika ā-ahurea, hei whakarite i ngā pāpātanga whakatutukitanga mō ngā tauira Māori me ngā tauira tauiwi.
- Me whakatinana ngā kaiako mātauranga matua i ō rātou ake wairua kia whakawhanake i ō rātou māramatanga.
- Me tīmata ki tētahi hōtaka whakawaia e mātua aro ana ki te whakawhanaukataka.
- Me whakahua tika i te reo Māori, i ngā karakia hoki hei whakamana i ngā kupu, hei waiata ngahau, hei whakauru mātauraka Māori, hei whakarato ki tētahi wāhi haumaru, ki tētahi wāhi e whakapiki wairua ana.
- Kia whai wāhi mō ngā tauira ki te whakahonohono i roto i te karaehe, i waho hoki i te karaehe.
- Kia whai wā mō ngā tauira ki te whai whakaaro i mua i te kōrero whakahoki, kia whai wā ki te kōrero mō te kaupapa, ka haere tonu hoki.
Kia mōhio, ka mamae te wairua, nā ngā kaupapa taumaha pea, ā, ka whakamahi i ētahi rautaki kia whakapiki wairua.
Ka tūmanako a Katrina, ka ārahi ēnei tūtohu i te whakaurunga i te wairua i ngā wāhi me ngā mahi ā-ringa o ngā mātauranga matua katoa.