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Indigenous Research Guide: Theses and dissertations

                            Mindful Research | Finding Theses and Dissertations

There are three main sources to find theses and dissertations on any topic:


While the institutional repositories and university library catalogues have theses for just one institution, databases group together theses from multiple institutions. At the University of Waterloo, we provide access to the following databases: Dissertations and Theses Global (international coverage), Theses Canada Portal (Canadian coverage), and our own institutional repository, UWSpace.

Institutional repositories 

These are currently the most widely used method for academic libraries to make theses and dissertations available for access, primarily in full-text and free of charge. Each university will have their own institutional repository and the arrangement and description of theses within that repository may vary from institution to institution. Most institutional repositories group theses and other content in categories known as 'collections' that bring together related theses, for example by faculty, department, or program. When searching an institutional repository, you may choose various search strategies, including the use of keywords in the search bar, filtering search results using 'facets' (filters that often appear on the left-hand side of the screen after you do a search), as well as just browsing through various collections to see what is available.

Browse our Canadian Institutional repositories below. 

University library catalogues

Most university libraries have theses from their institution also available for searching in their library catalogue. In some cases, you may need to search the Library catalogue to find a thesis not available in an institutional repository. This happens, for example, with older theses that may not have been digitized and for which only print copies are available from a particular library.

Institutional Repositories at Canadian Universities

This collection includes links to the Institutional Repositories of Canadian universities that offer degrees in First Nations, Inuit, and/or Métis studies, as well as degrees in other disciplines with an Indigenous focus (for example: Aboriginal Health Sciences).

Institutional Repositories are not limited to theses and dissertations, but may include other scholarly outputs from students and faculty at those institutions.

Please note that, even if a university does not offer a degree directly related to Indigenous studies, they may still have theses relevant to your research topic. Using a regular web search engine (such as Google Scholar), you can find other Universities' institutional repositories by searching: [University name] institutional repository.

Example: University of Prince Edward Island institutional repository. Once in the repository, you can search for theses and dissertations, as well as other research outputs from faculty and members of that university.

New Brunswick


Nova Scotia




Recently published

“That’s Our Traditional Way as Indigenous Peoples”: Towards a Conceptual Framework for Understanding Community Support of Sustainable Energies in NunatuKavut, Labrador. 

Nicholas Mercer, Amy Hudson, Debbie Martin, Paul Parker (2020). UWSpace


There is a substantial body of literature in North America regarding the social acceptance of renewable energies, particularly wind energy. However, limited research focuses on the experiences of Indigenous Peoples. Furthermore, several researchers have called for a rapid transition to renewable energies in Indigenous off-grid diesel powered communities in Canada, while limited research has considered local support for this transition, which neglects the Indigenous right of free, prior, and informed consent for developments on or which affect their territories. Working in partnership with nine Indigenous off-grid communities in southeast 

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