Native Studies is designed to provide both Native and non-Native students with an opportunity to explore the cultural, historical, and contemporary issues of Native people of North America, with emphasis on Native cultures of the Canadian Atlantic region and the eastern United States.
The Native Studies programme offers more than 40 courses. As an interdisciplinary major, it also draws on courses that are offered by various other disciplines. Upper-level courses include Native American philosophy, the role of Native women, Native people and the colonial experience, and Native history of the Maine/Maritime region. Language courses are another key component of the Native Studies programme. Courses in Maliseet and Micmac include introductory, intermediate and full-immersion levels.
In 1984 St. Thomas University became the first university in Canada to establish a chair in Native Studies.