Expanding the understanding of the social and cultural contexts that shape education and teaching is the motivation behind a public lecture tomorrow by a leading female Islamic academic.
Nada Roude, a cross-cultural educator and trainer, will address Bachelor of Teaching students, and local high school students, at the University of Newcastle Central Coast campus.
Mrs Roude was born in Lebanon and migrated to Australia aged nine. Since graduating from university she has played a pivotal role in raising awareness about the needs of Muslim families and issues affecting the Arabic community.
The lecture will provide students with an insight into Islam and its associated cultural traditions.
Deborah O'Neill, from the University's School of Education, said Mrs Roude's visit would play an influential role in shaping future teachers' cultural understanding.
"Cultural knowledge is an important asset as we increasingly become global citizens. Visits such as this helps our students develop cultural understanding," Ms O'Neill said.
"We live in a world rich in diversity. Our students will be teachers in the culturally rich Australian community and some will take up positions overseas.
"Learning about Islam and associated cultural practices gives our students a chance to understand the world with greater insight.
"The impact on student understanding about diversity of Mrs Roude's previous visits to the campus has been significant and we warmly welcome her back."
Mrs Roude is the Founder of the Muslim Women's Association and the Arabic Women's Federation. She also helped establish the first Muslim Women's refuge in Australia.
Joining Mrs Roude are the world-renowned Sufi musicians "Al Mahadeen". Sufism is Islamic mysticism and is one of the oldest traditions of spirituality in the history of religions.
The Sufi musicians, in their ancient costumes, are inspired by the words of Sufi poets and writers.
The lecture will run Tuesday 2 September from 8.30am to 11am in Lecture Theatre 2 at the University of Newcastle Central Coast campus. Al Mahadeen will perform during the lecture.
Interviews available with Mrs Roude at 11am outside Lecture Theatre 2.