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Australian Catholic University (ACU) engages the Catholic Intellectual Tradition to bring a distinct perspective to higher education. We explore cultural, social, ethical and religious issues through the lens of the Catholic Intellectual Tradition in our teaching, research and service.

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Articles (1 - 20 of 117)

Teachers have been found to mark boys higher than girls in maths, affecting their self-confidence with the subject. Shutterstock

Teachers' gender bias in maths affects girls later

New research has found some teachers mark boys' primary school maths tests more favourably than girls.
Since Kevin Rudd welcomed Tony Abbott to The Lodge 17 months ago, startling parallels between the prime ministerial struggles of the two populist leaders have emerged. AAP/Alan Porritt

Problem with cut-through politics is leaders can swiftly be cut down

The unsuccessful Liberal leadership spill on Monday arose from two disjunctures: between the electorate and the political class, and the leadership and backbench. This former disjuncture has occurred since…
World No. 1 men’s tennis player Novak Djokovic practises at the Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne, for this year’s Australian Open. AAP Image/Joe Castro

Rich rewards for those at the top in tennis, but what of the rest?

The world’s best tennis players are preparing to battle it out in Melbourne as the 2015 Australian Open gets under way this week. With rising grand-slam prize-money and better-than-ever exposure, you might…
The majority of Muslims have developed a humanitarian image of their prophet over a long period in their local cultures. Darulfatwa Australia/Author

Understanding Muhammad: we need a more informed approach

In any terrorist attack by Muslim extremists perpetrated in the name of Islam – such as the recent Charlie Hebdo atrocity – discussions about the Prophet Muhammad, his life and his teachings come to the…
There was no sense of recrimination at the Paris solidarity march in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attacks. AAP/Francois Pauletto

A million march in Paris with not a dog-whistle between them

On Sunday, millions of people turned out to reaffirm the unity of France in the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attack. About 1.5 million people came to the march in Paris. For two hours before the march started…
In the wake of the Charlie Hebdo attack, Parisians are defiant, not panicked. AAP/Ian Langsdon

Standing up for liberty in Paris as French eschew politics of fear

It’s evening now, and news reports are emerging that French police have homed in on an area north-east of Paris after two brothers suspected of being behind the Charlie Hebdo attack were spotted at a petrol…
The violence of the Exodus is disconcerting to a modern viewer, but the ancients would not blink an eye. 21st Century Fox

Ridley Scott battles with the essence of the Exodus

Ridley Scott’s 3D biblical epic Exodus: Gods and Kings (2014), an interpretation of the exodus of Israelite slaves from Egypt by Moses, sparked controversy last month when it was banned in Egypt and Morocco…
Westerners are rallying in support of free speech and the right to question religion but only recently has political Islam encouraged violent intolerance of acts or words deemed blasphemous. EPA/Sebastien Nogier

Islam, blasphemy and free speech: a surprisingly modern conflict

From the fatwa on author Salman Rushdie to the attack on the offices of French magazine Charlie Hebdo, the phenomenon of anti-blasphemy actions continues to be prominent in the Muslim world. At first glance…
Man Haron Monis, the perpetrator of the Sydney hostage siege, appeared to be unaware of basic Islamic theology. AAP/Dean Lewins

Sydney siege shows the rise of a new form of extremist

Man Haron Monis, the sole perpetrator of the Sydney hostage siege, is but one example of the recent development of a new form of Islamic extremist radicalisation. In recent years, Islamic extremism has…
The Senate has rejected Christopher Pyne’s fee deregulation plan, but that doesn’t mean the sector isn’t in need of reform. AAP

Fee deregulation is a bad idea, but our universities do need reform

Education Minister Christopher Pyne’s scheme for the deregulation of university fees is dead or delayed. Either way it has been exposed as bad for Australia. This is because it will put universities in…
New age ways of teaching where the children guide their learning rather than the teacher are perhaps not as effective. Shutterstock

‘Chalk and talk’ teaching might be the best way after all

Seventy teachers from the UK were sent to Shanghai to study classroom methods to investigate why Chinese students perform so well. Upon their return, the teachers reported that much of China’s success…
Jane Goodall is one of many scientists who have revealed how much there is to learn from animals about social organisation and communication. AAP/Julian Smith

If we could talk to the animals, what might they tell us about politics?

To endow animals with human emotions has long been a scientific taboo. But if we do not, we risk missing something fundamental about both animals and us. – Frans De Waal Some time ago I began reading scientific…
Piloted in South America, Coca-Cola Life launched in the UK and US in September, and is due in the Australian market in April. RiveraNotario/Flickr

A rose by any other name: the low-down on ‘healthy’ Coke

Coca-Cola has announced it will launch its newest soft drink in the Australian market in April 2015. Strongly promoted as “healthy” Coke elsewhere, Coca-Cola Life may do more to improve the company’s finances…
Foster parents often receive inadequate emotional and financial support. prudkov/Shutterstock

Foster parents need more support to care for vulnerable children

When children are deemed at risk of abuse or neglect and are removed from the family home, they are placed in out-of-home care, either with foster parents, relatives or in residential facilities. The latter…
A vice-chancellor has very different priorities, including the finances of the institution, so should they speak for the academy? Flickr/Ben Shepherd

Vice-chancellors vs the collegiate: who is right on deregulation?

The idea of university collegiality is an old one. Among some working in universities it evokes romantic notions of shared authority, democratic governance and inclusive decision-making. Others recall…
In office and in opposition, Gough Whitlam’s advocated for the Commonwealth Commission of Inquiry into Poverty. AAP/Dean Lewins

Whitlam’s forgotten legacy: a voice for the poor

Former prime minister Gough Whitlam, whose death at age 98 was announced on Tuesday, left significant legacies from his short time in office. Whatever their condition today, many of his government’s initiatives…
The Whitlam government’s legacy continues to be felt today, close to four decades since it lost office. AAP/Mick Tsikas

Gough Whitlam’s life and legacy: experts respond

Gough Whitlam, Labor prime minister from 1972 to 1975, has died aged 98. A giant of modern Australian politics, his passing triggered a flood of tributes on Tuesday morning. In a statement, current Labor…
Troops conduct an anti-terrorist drill in front of a banner of one of the Saudi royal family. Despite the kingdom’s role in fostering extremism, the US sees Saudi Arabia as an ally against Islamic State. EPA/Saudi Press Agency

Anti-terrorism plan must tackle ‘allies’ who also fuel radicalism

As Australia prepares to join combat operations, the coalition of nations stitched together by the US in response to the developing threat of Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS or ISIL) is overlooking the…
The best of our society’s thoughts and ideas should be compulsory learning for all students. AAP

A common curriculum means all students share common values

Should all schools, whether government, Catholic or independent, be forced to follow a centrally designed and monitored curriculum? And should this central curriculum be imposed upon schools regardless…
The distribution of wealth is fundamentally a moral question. So why has the response to the GFC been so sluggish? EPA/JUSTIN LANE

Bringing the free market down to earth is a moral question

Five years on, the response of governments around the world to the global financial crisis (GFC) continues to draw criticism. Leaders failed to fulfil the promises they made during the GFC’s darkest days…

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