Internationally acclaimed scholar of Islam-West relations Associate Professor Halim Rane has been recognised for his student-focused commitment, winning a 2015 Office of Learning and Teacher Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning.
Associate Professor Rane, who teaches a number of courses within Islamic Studies, said he aimed to promote mutual understanding between Islam and the West by producing graduates who can address challenges and issues based on sound knowledge, analysis and critical thinking.
When he arrived at Griffith in 2008 there were no Islamic studies courses on offer, so he developed a suite of courses addressing the interests and needs of non-Muslim students, as well as Western-born Muslims and which have a contemporary, secular focus on Islam-West Relations.
“Students graduate with an understanding of, and the capacity to engage with, Muslim communities and the Muslim world, as well as the knowledge and skills sought by a range of public and private sector employers,’’ he said.
“Recent graduates have been employed by the Royal Australian Air Force, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Department of Defence, Department of Immigration and Border Protection, Department of Communities, Multicultural Development Agency, USAid (East Timor), and Zaman Media (Turkey’s largest media organisation).”
Associate Professor Rane’s capstone course, the Muslim World Study Tour to Malaysia, Turkey, Spain and Morocco offers students a significant international experience.
“The course provides first-hand engagement with the diversity of people, cultures and societies across four countries with deep roots in Islamic civilisation,’’ he said.
“The wide range of in-country experiences includes visiting places of cultural and religious significance as well as meetings with political and religious leaders, academics and journalists in order to gain deep insights into the Muslim world.”
Associate Professor Rane’s teaching approach is outcome-based as well as contextual.
“As this field is still emerging in the Western context, I regularly consult with students, academics, contacts in government departments and NGO’s to ensure my courses are relevant to contemporary realities in respect to student, academic and potential employer needs and interests,’’ he explains.
“My courses motivate and inspire students because they provide the necessary knowledge and skills to deal with complex Islamic and Muslim issues sensitively and professionally from the perspectives of the humanities and social sciences”.
As well as his teaching commitments, Associate Professor Rane has authored a number of books including Islam and Contemporary Civilsation: Evolving Ideas, Transforming Relations and Media Framing of the Muslim World: Conflict, Crises and Contexts, that are required reading at several universities.
See who else received a Citation.