UOW School of Liberal Arts Highlights Report 2020

Mar 31, 2021 | Announcements, News & Media

Sydney, Wednesday 31 March 2021: One year on from establishing its highly anticipated BA in Western Civilisation degree, the University of Wollongong (UOW) has released a report on its website, detailing the success of the program, and the newly created School of Liberal Arts (SOLA) in which the degree is housed.

The School of Liberal Arts Highlights Report 2020 states that SOLA ‘has succeeded in putting Paul Ramsay’s generous philanthropic gift to good effect’ with students at the end of the degree’s first year ‘already proven to be among the highest performing and most satisfied student cohort at the University of Wollongong.’

Professor Theo Farrell, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education) is quoted: “The Bachelor of Arts in Western Civilisation degree achieved the strongest subject evaluation results and achieved the highest proportion of Distinctions and High Distinctions in the University in 2020. This is an outstanding achievement from a degree in its first year of operation, and especially given the bar set by the University’s other very high performing programs.”

The Ramsay Centre and UOW entered a partnership in 2019. Worth approximately $50 million over eight years, the partnership enables UOW to create its Western Civilisation program, hire world-class educators to teach it, and to offer at least 150 undergraduate scholarships over that period. The first intake into the program was in 2020. The partnership is made possible through the extraordinary generosity of the late Paul Ramsay AO, founder of Ramsay Health Care. 

The Highlights Report states that UOW’s Bachelor of Arts in Western Civilisation is inspired by highly successful liberal arts programs around the globe, including those offered by Columbia University, New York, St John’s College, Annapolis and Santa Fe, and St Olaf College, Minnesota. It lists an advisory board, with representation from prestigious overseas universities such as Columbia University and University of Singapore.

UOW’s BA in Western Civilisation has ‘questioning and reflection’ as its ‘lifeblood’ and puts ‘curious minds to work, studying exemplary works of art, literature, religion, philosophy, and science that form the cornerstones of Western civilisation…’

The Highlights Report provides a comprehensive overview of the degree’s core structure and subjects, the teaching methods employed, and how course delivery was achieved during the global pandemic. It covers the Ramsay Scholarship selection process, academic appointments, and staff and student feedback.

Many students and staff provide glowing endorsements in the report, particularly relating to the teaching models. The models include small group tutorials using the Socratic Method, as well as assessment training activities, in which students hone their ability to ‘think and write skilfully through consultation with academic staff, and by revising their work in special sessions devoted to the peer review of essay plans and drafts.’

Ramsay Centre CEO Professor Simon Haines said he was delighted to see the success of the program and thanked SOLA Head of School Senior Professor Daniel Hutto for helping to bring Paul Ramsay’s vision to life.

The report: UOW – School of Liberal Arts Highlights Report 2020

Media contact: Sarah Switzer 0407 816 098/ sarah.switzer@ramsaycentre.orgFor more information on the centre please visit our website: www.ramsaycentre.org