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National Islamic Studies Curriculum: Process, Expectations and Quality Cont...

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945 Sydney Rd

945 Sydney Road

Coburg North, VIC 3058

Australia

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A major aim for the establishment of Islamic schools pertains to the preservation of the ‘Islamic’ in terms of religious matters such as faith and practices. However, despite this noble aim, and the obvious significance of Islamic Studies as a key learning area or subject in Islamic schools, no empirical research exists to date that examines the nature, scope, effectiveness, and relevance of Islamic Studies as taught within ‘Islamic’ schools. This study utilised qualitative research methods to explore the strengths and weaknesses of Islamic Studies, the challenges faced in the teaching and learning of Islamic Studies, and the attitudes of students toward the relevance and effectiveness of Islamic Studies to their lives as young Australian Muslims. A key finding was the absence of an Islamic Studies curriculum and syllabus in Islamic schools leading to a number of problem including: lack of overarching approach encompassing aims, goals, plans, decision-making process, procedures and vision for Islamic Studies. The result, according to Islamic studies teachers is chaos and confusion in implementation of Islamic studies, and a lack of systematic approach to Islamic Studies subjects making it difficult to teach.

Professor Mohamad Abdalla is one of Australia’s most prominent and respected Muslim leaders, combining the roles of an academic scholar, public intellectual, community leader and commentator. In 2016, he secured a senior staff appointment by invitation from the Vice Chancellor of the University of South Australia to establish the Centre for Islamic Thought and Education (CITE). Prof Abdalla is currently the Founding Director of CITE. Over the last 15 years, Prof Abdalla played a leading role in establishing Islamic Studies (Research and Teaching) as an academic area of study in Australia. In 2005, establish the Griffith University Islamic Research Unit (GIRU), and gradually built a team of academics on modest resources. In 2008, he played a key role in the establishment of the National Centre of Excellence for Islamic Studies (NCEIS), a dynamiccollaboration between the University of Melbourne, Griffith University and the University of Western Sydney. In 2006, he was of the founder of the Australian national Imams Council, and served as its Spokesperson and Vice-President. He was acting Imam of the Kuraby Mosque in Brisbane for many years. Prof Abdalla published 1 monograph; 1 co-edited book, and over 25 Journal articles and book chapters. He has two forthcoming edited books: Islamic schooling in the West: Pathways to Renewal (Palgrave MacMillan), and Leadership in Islam: Processes and Solutions in Australian Organizations (Palgrave MacMillan).

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945 Sydney Rd

945 Sydney Road

Coburg North, VIC 3058

Australia

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