Help revitalize our languages for future generations.

The Certificate in Indigenous Language Revitalization (CILR) program provides a strong foundation of knowledge and skills to develop practical strategies for local language revitalization initiatives. The CILR program provides hands-on learning opportunities that are rooted in traditional knowledge and practices, and that are accessible to all students. The program is primarily offered through community-based partnerships, however we are currently accepting individual applicants for a cohort starting in September 2022.

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Program description

The award-winning and accessible Certificate in Indigenous Language Revitalization is offered by the University of Victoria's Department of Linguistics and the Division of Continuing Studies, in partnership with the En'owkin Centre.

The goal of the certificate program is to develop understanding of the complex dynamics of language loss, maintenance, and recovery while also providing practical strategies for work in Indigenous communities to preserve and revitalize threatened languages. This program is designed to honour traditional knowledge and practices, to recognize and accommodate the realities and needs of diverse communities, and to provide a foundation for both language revitalization activities and for further study in linguistics, education, and/or cultural resource management.

The certificate is offered in the following delivery streams:

  • It can be tailored to and delivered in partnership with Indigenous nations, communities and organizations
  • It can be offered in partnership with other colleges
  • It is also available to individual learners from across Canada wishing to gain skills in the area of Indigenous Language Revitalization

Courses can be taught on-site in a partner community, online or occasionally courses are offered on campus in Victoria. Core coursework, combined with flexible elective offerings, enables individuals concerned with language loss, maintenance, and revitalization to develop both knowledge and practical strategies for language revitalization activities.

Program participants include individuals working with Indigenous communities in the revitalization and teaching of Indigenous languages, or with agencies involved in the development and delivery of language and cultural revitalization policies and programs. In partnership, the courses can be offered in flexible delivery options as a full certificate or as individual courses.

Program features

The CILR program offers:

  • Accessibility via a partnership model that delivers the program in Indigenous communities
  • Flexible delivery options designed to suit learners' needs
  • A respected university credential upon program completion
  • Course credits that can be applied towards a diploma or degree

Program partners

Faculty of Humanities, Department of Linguistics

En'owkin Centre logo

As well as partnering with various communities.

Who is this program for?

The CILR program is designed for those who have an interest in working with Indigenous communities and/or agencies in the revitalization and teaching of Indigenous languages.

Past participants have included students from diverse geographic regions who are looking to learn from one another, as well as from experienced instructors and resource people.

Career options

Some of our learners pursue careers in the following roles:
  • Government Employee
  • Language Revitalization Project Coordinator
  • Language Documentation Officer
  • Language Programs Assistant
  • Language Teacher Assistant


News and resources

Courses and fees

Participants in the certificate program in Indigenous Language Revitalization must complete five core courses (7.5 units) and three elective courses (4.5 units).

CILR electives are chosen based on partner participant interest. If you are taking the program in a community cohort, electives will be taken together and are usually tailored to the community context, language and needs. 

To assist in your program planning, you can also view all course descriptions on one page. 

Estimated fees

Budgets for in-community delivery can vary and a detailed budget projection can be provided that reflects current prices and community needs. Please contact us for details.

Application information

How to apply

The CILR program is now accepting applications from individual applicants as part of a cohort starting in September 2022. Join our email list if you are an individual student interested in this program. 

We continue to take on new partnerships with Indigenous nations to deliver the program in communities. This application process is ongoing. If you are a representative of an Indigenous nation or college interested in partnering with UVic to deliver the CILR program in your area, please contact us.  

CILR Award

Continuing Studies at UVic offers the Certificate in Indigenous Language Revitalization (CILR) Award. The award was made possible through the generosity of anonymous donors and will contribute to ensuring the CILR program is accessible to more learners to support their educational path and the language revitalization needs of their community. How to apply to the CILR Award.

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