Enhancing the quality and vitality of Australian
Other materials related to the research discussion on 16 February by the Australian network of GRACE (Global Researchers Advancing Catholic Education)
Not all at the participants in the discussion would regard themselves as Religious Education scholars -- but rather as wider Catholic Education scholars or some other preferred description. No matter what their designated academic/research base, all academics interested in Catholic education need a view of where Religious Education fits into the equation of academic disciplines and fields of research. This is not about 'dominance' or 'status', but just recognition of the importance of Religious Education for Catholic Education.
1. Religious Education as an academic discipline and a field of research in Australian Catholic tertiary institutions
Many Religious Education scholars consider that the enterprise of Religious Education research rests on the basis of Religious Education (RE) being a recognised, legitimate academic discipline, that can take its place in both Catholic and non-religious universities along side disciplines like Theology, Philosophy and Religion Studies.
Religious Educators cannot presume that this view will always be accepted, even within a Catholic tertiary institution. Hence it is up to RE scholars themselves to articulate their view of Religious Education as both an academic discipline and a field of research, even if their current position is secure academically. I think that RE scholars, both individually and as research groups, need to develop such a 'philosophy of Religious Education' that can give perspective to their work, promoting its coherence, vitality and quality. It needs to appear in either their own or their group's web presence; it should inform their research and studies, as well as their research supervision. This can also serve as a platform for understanding relationships with other disciplines, and for facilitating communication and collaboration with scholars in various disciplines both in Australia and overseas.
2. Enhancing the quality of research and research supervision.
This material is from earlier seminars on enhancing the quality of research supervision. It focuses especially on helping higher degree research students with the planning and construction of their thesis.
3. A critical period for the future trajectory of Catholic school religious education
This material draws attention to what is considered to be a major problem and handicap for the future trajectory of Catholic school Religious Education. It addresses the issues through the following:-