« Arts and Social Science

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This offering is available to enrollees as either a micro-credential OR as professional development (without assessment).

Attendance pattern 

This course is a 5 day intensive running from 9am to 5pm. The times of face to face sessions and discussion groups will be advised through your student portal. At other times you are free to consult key readings and listen to pre-recorded presentations and other course materials.

Please note – in order to make the most of the key readings, pre-recorded presentations and other course materials, your student portal will be available from 30 August until 22 October. For those taking the course as a micro-credential, your first assessment is due prior to the course commencing and requires you to engage with key readings and pre-recorded presentations before this date.


The repatriation of Ancestral Remains is a highly significant Indigenous achievement and inter-cultural development of the past 40 years. Enrollees explore the practice, history, meaning and significance of repatriation for Indigenous peoples, museums and broader society. The micro-credential is designed for those interested and engaged in repatriation practice, research and policy-making, for example in community, museum, university and government sectors. It focuses on the skills for successful repatriation practice—how to locate and return Ancestral Remains; the history of how, when, why Ancestral Remains were taken and the Indigenous response; the connection of repatriation to Indigenous law, culture, ethics, Country and community development; institutional, agency and government policy regimes; repatriation and its international context.

Download the indicative schedule (pdf, 200kb)

Your course presenters are national and international repatriation experts from community organisations, museums and research institutions, many of whom are part of the Return Reconcile Renew research network


  1. Skills for successful repatriation practice – how to locate and return Ancestral Remains
  2. The history of how, when, why Ancestral Remains were taken and the Indigenous response
  3. The connection of repatriation to Indigenous law, culture, ethics, Country and community development
  4. Institutional, agency and government policy regimes
  5. Repatriation and its international context

Learning outcomes 

Upon successful completion, enrollees will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. To develop a holistic knowledge of repatriation and understanding of its inter-connectedness with Indigenous law, culture, ethics, country and community development.
  2. To develop understanding of the history of the removal of Indigenous ancestral remains and the rise of the reburial movement.
  3. To develop understanding of key issues of repatriation for museums and other collecting institutions.
  4. To critically examine changes in museum ideology and the development of relevant policies and professional codes of ethics.
  5. To develop critical and inter-disciplinary skills towards assessment, implementation and analysis of repatriation policies and practices.
  6. To facilitate an understanding of appropriate consultation and working relationships with a diverse range of stakeholders.

Indicative assessment (for micro-credential option only)

Assignment 1: Pre-reading and 5 key text summaries. Word length: 300 words each. Total: 1500 words

Assignment 2: Two questions for the panel for each of three panel sessions of your choice. i.e. 6 questions in total. Word length: 30 words per question each accompanied by 220 words explaining some background context. i.e. 250 words per question for 6 questions, equalling 1500 words total OR daily journal of key learnings from the course (approximately 300 words per day)

Assignment 3: Research Essay. Word length: 3,000 words OR repatriation project - project topic to be decided in discussion with convenor. Project description and findings to be presented to a panel and other participants. Presentation of no more than 20 minutes duration. Panel and audience may ask questions.

Assumed knowledge 

This micro-credential is taught at graduate level and assumes the generic skills of a Bachelors or equivalent.

Micro-credential stack information 

This micro-credential is undertaken as a stand-alone offering.


Course Code: DATA34

Workload: 130 hours 

  • Contact hours: 35 hours (5 hours per day 13-17 September 2021) Please note this micro-credential will be taught in blended mode.
  • Individual study and assessment: 95 hours

ANU unit value: 6 units

Course Code Level: 8000

Contact: Professor Cressida Fforde or Dr Gareth Knapman

Cost: Full fee: $2600

Indigenous community members without organisation support: $0

Group discounts: first two participants at full price, everyone after that $1300 each

Please email microcredentials@anu.edu.au for information about how to access pricing discounts.

This course is co-developed and delivered by repatriation researchers and practitioners involved in the Return, Reconcile, Renew research group, including at:

  • The Australian National University,
  • University of Technology Sydney,
  • University of Melbourne,
  • University of Tasmania,
  • Kimberley Aboriginal Law and Culture Centre,
  • Ngarrindjeri Regional Authority,
  • Gur a Baradharaw Kod
  • Torres Strait Sea and Land Council,
  • The National Museum of Australia, and
  • The Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa.

This Micro-credential is taught at a graduate level.  This is not an AQF qualification.

View all Upcoming Micro-credentials