Within the Catholic intellectual tradition and acting in Truth and Love, Australian Catholic University is committed to the pursuit of knowledge, the dignity of the human person and the common good.
Acting in truth and love
Our mission is at the heart of everything we do at ACU. It guides our approach to learning and teaching, our welcoming and engaging on-campus culture, and our commitment to building a better society by producing graduates willing to invest in this same commitment.
In this mission, we engage the Catholic intellectual tradition to bring a distinct perspective to higher education.
It’s important to honour traditions, particularly those that inspire us to be better people and lead better lives. That’s why we have a patron saint for the University and each faculty and campus. Our patron saints provide examples of acting in truth and love and what life in service to the pursuit of knowledge, dignity of the human person and the common good looks like.
Whether they dedicated themselves to educating forgotten members of society or spent their lives in scholarly contemplation, our patron saints lived out our mission in days past.
Meet our patron saints
Our university prayer asks for strength to pursue our mission. Read the prayer and submit a prayer request to our campus ministry team.
Read our university prayer
Our mission in action
Our mission comes to life through the values that we’ve chosen to sit at the heart of the University and our community.
Truth, academic excellence and service are our core values, but these are complemented by a further set of values that guide our daily operations: equity, diversity, accessibility, wellbeing and sustainability.
Understand our values
Students encounter the practical application of our mission through our Core Curriculum units. These three units ask that you think outside your own realm of experiences and see the world through the eyes of others.
A key part of all our courses, the Core acknowledges that education is more than just a degree – it’s about developing the whole person.
Find out how the Core Curriculum fosters academic success
As part of the Core, all students complete one community engagement unit that asks them to dedicate themselves to the service of those less fortunate and work alongside the margins, where learning happens on both sides. Community engagement allows you to reflect on your role in promoting the dignity of all and working for the common good.
The form your community engagement takes depends on your field of study, but many courses offer opportunities to complete this unit overseas.
Explore our community engagement opportunities
Living the mission
On each of our campuses across the country, our staff and students carry out our mission every day.
The pursuit of knowledge is a fundamental part of our mission and that is reflected across our faculties as well as through the world-leading research conducted by our academics and higher degree research students.
But we’re also committed to educating and encouraging our students and staff to be responsible citizens.
Learn more about our community engagement
Research for the real world
Our researchers don’t just add to the body of academic work on any given topic. They also apply our mission when they work with the end-user to identify and address real-world problems, and to make a positive impact.
By engaging with those who ultimately benefit from our expertise, our research improves the health, wellbeing and prosperity of individuals, organisations and communities in a sustainable way.
Discover the impact of our research
Equity in education
We want everyone to have the opportunity of higher education. But it’s not enough to just talk about making university accessible for all. We’ve worked hard to put programs in place that give people who may not have thought university was possible the chance to pursue a degree.
For our First Peoples, that means we run Away From Base courses so that our students can keep their connection to country while they study.
Read more about our First Peoples pathways
For young students who face more hurdles than most, it’s about introducing them to university early so they can plan for higher education in their future.
We run programs for primary and secondary school students, and their parents, that aim to introduce them to our campuses and the different pathways into university.
Read more about how our equity pathways are widening participation
For community members who are experiencing multiple disadvantages, we offer the opportunity for them to improve their situation through learning.
Through the Clemente Australia program, we provide a four-unit Certificate of Liberal Studies that then opens the door for further study.
Read more about Clemente Australia
Our Catholic partners
Working collaboratively with our Catholic partners, we’ve developed a range of courses designed to support and strengthen Church ministry.
Informed by the Catholic intellectual tradition and Catholic moral and social teaching, and reflecting our mission, these courses cover areas such as:
- applied ethics and philosophy
- chaplaincy and pastoral care
- safeguarding children, young people and vulnerable adults
- business management
We offer these programs across a range of levels and can customise them to accommodate your particular needs.
Browse available courses on our Catholic partners page