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Nikki Yee

Nikki Yee, PhD

Assistant Professor

Abbotsford campus

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I’m a settler scholar of Chinese and Mennonite descent originally from Treaty 6 territory in Saskatchewan, the traditional territory of the Cree, Saulteaux, Stoney, Nakota, and Dakota Peoples and Homeland of the Métis. In my teaching, learning, and research, I strive to open decolonizing possibilities in inclusive and special education and learn more about the superdiverse identities that make each person unique.

I’m particularly passionate about building from the strength of diversity to support student learning. I believe that diverse perspectives can encourage innovation and imagination to open decolonizing possibilities in education and society. As an instructor, I use teaching approaches, such as self-regulated learning (Butler, Schnellert, & Perry, 2017), ethical spaces of engagement (Ermine, 2007), and decolonizing pedagogies (Donald, 2009) that build from respect, reflection, relationship, and creativity. In this way, I hope to model the kinds of inclusive classroom practices that teacher candidates can ultimately use in their own diverse classrooms.

In my career I’ve had the opportunity to work in many inspiring educational contexts, which have informed my teaching and research. I’ve taught in every grade from Pre-K to grade 12, having been a classroom and special education teacher in rural elementary schools with multi-grade classrooms, and larger high schools. In addition to that, I have also taught adults with learning disabilities, and EFL classes in Tanggu, Tianjin, China. It has been so inspiring for me to see how some of my students have worked through difficult challenges to meet their goals. Their successes prompted me to investigate, through my Master’s program, how I could more precisely support adolescents who struggled with reading. Later on, through my PhD program, I started to think about the many challenges faced by the Indigenous students I had taught and how inclusive learning supports may need to do a better job of considering their unique experiences. I brought together a diverse Community of Inquiry to engage in decolonizing approaches and create guiding principles and practices that might help teachers support Indigenous (and all) students in inclusive classrooms. I have also conducted a Review of Inclusive and Special Education for the Yukon Department of Education that allowed me to understand student support and inclusion from a broader systems level. As I continue to work with diverse learners in post-secondary contexts, I learn more and more about how I can build from the potential of diversity to really enrich learning for all students.

I’m so excited to be a part of the faculty in the Teacher Education Department at UFV and can’t wait to meet the next group of students!

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