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ERIC Number: EJ812335
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Aug
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 9
ISSN: ISSN-1361-7672
Faith and Secularisation in Religious Colleges and Universities
Arthur, James
Journal of Beliefs & Values, v29 n2 p197-202 Aug 2008
This article looks at the contemporary rationale for faith-based universities. There has certainly been a new openness to issues in religion within higher education more generally. Religious influence and involvement in higher education continues to be extensive and manifests itself through the presence of believing Christians, Jews and Muslims in almost all universities and colleges in the world. These three main religious faiths provide chaplaincies and religious associations in the majority of the world's secular universities and colleges. All three faiths also provide and sponsor their own institutions of higher education, often in the form of large universities and colleges. These religiously affiliated institutions are on the increase today, as are the numbers of students who attend them. On a world basis there can be found organisations and networks of Jewish, Christian and Muslims representing faith-sponsored centres, colleges and universities. Today many Christian institutions more often than not begin with a statement of secular educational principles. They also, together with Jewish institutions, emphasise community involvement, the promotion of justice and service learning as unique features of their mission, but these religiously affiliated universities are not so unique. Such institutions lack a substantive definition of their religious identity and consequently their vague definitions of religious purpose lead to ambiguity and ambivalence about what they represent and how such definitions impact on every facet of their institutions. Often these kinds of religiously affiliated institution relegate the substance of their religious identity to specific areas of university and college life, such as chaplaincy, special courses, centres or chairs, creating a kind of sub-culture. In so doing they do no more than many secular universities. There are of course others that begin with and operate a more definite religious mission. This article looks largely at Christian institutions.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A