Catholic teachers and leaders offered a new certification in Catholic Social Ecology

21 Jun 2024

By The Record

CIWA & Caritas Professional Certificate
CIWA Office Manager, Margaret Stawowy, Caritas Australia Community Engagement Animator WA & SA, Deacon Paul Reid, CIWA Managing Director, Dr John Topliss, CEWA Coordinator, Formation for Mission Diana Alteri and CIWA Senior Lecturer, Dr Nathan Leber. Photo: Supplied.

The Catholic Institute of Western Australia (CIWA) has expanded its course offerings to encompass a distinctive Professional Certificate of Catholic Social Ecology.

The certification will provide students with advanced standing options towards either a Master of Education or a Master of Education (Religious Education) degree at the University of Notre Dame Australia.

CIWA Managing Director, Dr John Topliss said students wanting to advance their education or religious education degrees to a Masters can now incorporate Catholic social teaching, and the role of God and integral ecology, into their studies – and indeed, into their future careers as a result.

“It is a certification that recognises the importance of theological approaches to ecology. Making it available honours our collective commitment as Catholic organisations to prioritise caring for our common home,” explained Dr Topliss.

The certification is comprised of two courses, both of which are based on resources from Caritas Australia and Catholic Earthcare Australia:

  • CIWA 6080, Catholic Social Teaching
  • CIWA 6120, God and Integral Ecology

These courses will be delivered by staff from the CIWA, a recognised tertiary and educational body established by the Catholic Bishops of Western Australia.

The Professional Certificate of Catholic Social Ecology is unique, having tripartite support from Caritas Australia, Catholic Earthcare Australia and Catholic Education Western Australia.

The Catholic Bishops of Western Australia also endorsed the certification and encouraged educational leaders and teachers to undertake these on-line courses through the Catholic Institute of Western Australia.

For more information, go to