Danielle Kwan-Lafond

Danielle Kwan-Lafond
Assistant Professor - Teaching Stream
Telephone number
Building HL 470

Professor Dani Kwan-Lafond is a mixed-race woman born in Treaty 4 territory (Saskatchewan) who has lived in Tkaronto (Toronto) for many years. She is a former social worker, a former high-school leaver, and someone with lived experience as a social service client; these experiences continue to inform her teaching practice and commitment to non-traditional, decolonized and anti-racist approaches to teaching and learning. Professor Kwan-Lafond’s teaching and research interests include social inequality, Indigenous studies, race/racism, youth studies, and the sociology of education. Her approach to teaching and learning is informed by UDL (universal design in learning), trauma-informed approaches to teaching Indigenous content, and a focus on reflexivity and self-reflection for students. She is committed to the meaningful inclusion of communities in the classroom (‘nothing about us without us’), and her courses often involve guests, collaborators and/or hands-on activities that enhance students’ understandings of difficult material. Professor Kwan-Lafond also works with Indigenous students and teachers at TEC University in Costa Rica, where she has traveled with students from Canada to do land-based learning with Indigenous communities. She was formerly the Coordinator of the Indigenous Studies certificate program at Centennial College, where she helped create a free online eTextbook available to all learners in Canada. Her PhD dissertation involves participatory research with first-generation Canadian youth in a large suburban high school, and is focused on parental involvement, post-secondary pathways, and notions of success for first-generation youth. Her PhD work was supported by the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship.  


B.S.W., Ryerson (2005)
M.Ed., OISE/UofT (2009)
PhD, York University (forthcoming)


Kwan-Lafond, D. (forthcoming). Book Review: Distorted Descent: White Claims to Indigenous Identity by Darryl Leroux. Journal of Critical Mixed Race Studies.

Kwan-Lafond, D. and Winterstein, S. (2019). The Canadian Census and mixed race: tracking mixed race through ancestry, visible minority status, and Métis population groups in Canada. In Aspinall, P. and Rocha, Z. (Eds.). The Palgrave International Handbook of Mixed Racial and Ethnic Classification. Springer International Publishing AG. London, UK.

OER (Open Educational Resource) eTextbook (2018). Our Stories: First Peoples in Canada. Apple iBook/online Open Education Resource (OER). eCampus Ontario/Centennial College. Available at: https://ecampusontario.pressbooks.pub/indigstudies/part/main-body/ and on Apple iBooks: https://books.apple.com/ca/book/our-stories-first-peoples-in-canada/id14...

Mahtani, M., D. Kwan-Lafond, and L. Taylor. (2014). In King-O’Riain, R., S. Small, M. Mahtani, M. Song, and P. Spickard (Eds.). Chapter title: Exporting the Mixed Race Nation: Mixed Race in the Canadian Context. (2014). In Global Mixed Race. NYU Press, p. 238-262.

Chapman-Nyaho, S., James, Carl E., and Kwan-Lafond, D. (2012). “We Expect Much of You”: A Youth and Policing Initiative. Canadian Ethnic Studies Journal, 43-44, (1-2), p. 81-98.

Kwan-Lafond, D. (2011). Chapter 13: Racialized Masculinities in Canada. In Laker, J. (Ed.). Canadian Perspectives on Men and Masculinities: An Interdisciplinary Reader. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press. pp. 222-240.

Kwan-Lafond, D., Harrison, D., and Albanese, P. (Autumn 2011). Parental Military Deployments and Adolescents’ Household Work. Studies in Political Economy. 88 (1). pp. 163-189.