24 March 2021Share
A message from the Executive Dean (Faculty of Theology and Philosophy) Professor Dermot Nestor:
That man is wise, claimed Aristophanes, who can say what he wants in a minimum of words. As the celebrated author of some 40 plays, of which Assemblywomen contains the longest word in any class of literature*, it is clear Aristophanes is not someone who took this statement to heart.
Brevity, or its close synonym, “short”, is a concept which all staff within the Faculty of Theology and Philosophy have rallied around these past few months. Beginning with the highly successful transition of our Short Course in Theology Series to a fully online format, faculty staff (academic and professional) are now fully engaged with the opportunities held out by the Open Learning platform and ACU’s Microcredential and Short Course Policy.
Partnering with colleagues in ACU Digital, the Faculty will soon launch several fully online short courses that respond directly to identified need amongst several stakeholder groups. Embracing topics that range from religious education and adult faith formation to eco-theology and modern slavery, these short courses not only enable a rapid, intellectually robust and quality-assured response, but equally provide for an accessible, affordable and always relevant means of connecting with the university and its expertise. Where this is a sound business model, it is, more importantly, a clear illustration of a commitment to the guiding mission of the university.
As a specific example of that point where the rubber of the innovation agenda hits the hard road of operational reality, the journey to create these short courses has been an utterly remarkable one. It has shifted paradigmatic thinking on what constitutes “core business”, reawakened the original motivation of colleagues to become academics, and has galvanised the spirit of cooperation and collaboration that is essential to shared success.
As the old imperator to ‘do things better’ fades away, I welcome all colleagues, across all schools and faculties, to join us in an embrace of the opportunities associated with ‘doing better things’.
*Lopadotemachoselachogaleokranioleipsanodrimhypotrimmatosilphioparaomelitokatakechymenokichlepikossyphophattoperisteralektryonoptekephalliokigklopeleiolagoiosiraiobaphetraganopterygo – a transliteration of the ancient Greek λοπαδοτεμαχοσελαχογαλεοκρανιολειψανοδριμυποτριμματοσιλφιοκαραβομελιτοκατακεχυμενοκιχλεπικοσσυφοφαττοπεριστεραλεκτρυονοπτοκεφαλλιοκιγκλοπελειολαγῳοσιραιοβαφητραγανοπτερύγων – refers to a fictitious dish containing meat, fish and wine.