Leveraging the power of international partnerships between Australia and India

Since 2010, a vibrant partnership between ACU and Christ University (Deemed to be University) in India has been delivering a wealth of cross-cultural research, teaching and learning opportunities for staff and students at both institutions.

ACU’s Dr Sindu George is one of them.

A senior lecturer in education and an expert on the impacts of cultural influences on teaching practices, particularly in India, Sindu established a research collaboration with Christ University’s School of Education back in 2017.

Based on the ongoing collaboration and engagement the Head of School at Christ University’s School of Education invited Dr George as a ‘Scholar in Residence’ at Christ university which was an opportunity to strengthen partnerships at individual, faculty, and university levels. 

“I’d always wanted to explore the scope of those connections [between ACU and Christ University], because I’m always looking at global partnerships and thinking, how can I contribute to making this partnership more effective?” she says.

Sindu spent five weeks in India where she strengthened not only her individual research relationships but the bilateral partnership between the two institutions.

"[The Scholar in Residence program gave me dedicated time to explore] further opportunities for collaborative research. I offered some professional development sessions for academics at Christ university and teachers at Christ group of schools.  I also had opportunities to interact with the preservice teachers as well. It was a multi-level engagement,” she says.

“[It also enabled conversations about how to] establish a foundation for more university-wide collaborations. We had some meaningful discussions and [made a] list of programs that we [think will build] a stronger [foundation] between Christ University and ACU.”

As a result of the visit, Sindu is now planning to extend two of her research projects to include her Christ University collaborators, as well as to include data from Indian education institutes.

She is also developing a number of new collaborative projects with her partners, including one focused on the Indian Government’s new inclusive education policy and another looking at STEM education opportunities in low-income communities.

At the university level, ACU and Christ University are now discussing new student mobility opportunities, including international exchanges and joint PhD programs, as well as study tours and professional development programs for teachers. 

Since 2010, the partnership between ACU and Christ (Deemed to be University) has fostered opportunities for these two globally recognised Catholic universities to engage in joint academic and research endeavours spanning across disciplines, with a focus on academic excellence, professional competence and making effective contributions to society in the pursuit of knowledge, ethics and global responsibility.

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