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 The work of the Centre for Religious Education at MIE is driven by four pillars:

  1. The Edmund Rice Vision
  2. Academic Programmes
  3. Research
  4. Dialogue and Outreach

The Edmund Rice Vision

MIE is committed to the person and values of Blessed Edmund Rice, in particular his vision of an inclusive and liberating education. Edmund Rich is the founder of the Christian Brothers who are the co-trustees of the institute.  MIE pro-actively supports initiatives such as the Edmund Rice Schools Trust (ERST), Edmund Rice Education Beyond Borders (EREBB) and Edmund Rice International (ERI).

The EREBB Online Leadership Programme is run by the Centre for RE.  It was designed and is moderated by Dr Aiveen Mullally.  The course has been developed to support teachers, educators, leaders and those aspiring to leadership in Edmund Rice schools and educational communities around the globe to become advocates and proponents of inclusive and liberating education practices. It is an interactive, 20-hour course which participants can complete in their own time during a semester.

The programme has been running since 2017 and is offered twice over the academic year (September – December and January - May). It offers the opportunity to connect with the global Edmund Rice Network and discuss insights and challenges together on various discussion fora throughout the programme related to Edmund Rice educational values, social justice and advocacy and spiritual leadership. For more information click here. 

 Academic Programmes

The Masters in Education Studies (Leadership in Christian Education) has been developed by the Centre for Religious Education.  This two-year part-time programme explores key concepts in theology, educational leadership, education policy, management, and research within the context of faith-based education. It is designed as a specialist postgraduate programme for the development of leadership capacity in primary and second-level education and is accredited by Trinity College, Dublin. 

Click here for more information.

The Adult Education Certificate in Spirituality and Human Development has been a core component of the Centre’s outreach since 2015.  This is a two-year, part-time evening programme.  It explores themes relating to human and spiritual development, such as Celtic spirituality, scripture, cosmology and ecology, intergenerational healing and dreams and spiritual growth. 

Click here  for more details.

The Certificate in Religious Education (BEd2 & BEd3 and PME) seeks to enable our Teacher Education students to address the many spiritual and religious opportunities and challenges facing primary school pupils and to contribute to their holistic development by enabling them to develop ethically and morally, spiritually and religiously. This certificate programme presents a summary of what it means to be Catholic, which enables teachers to teach in a child-centred, developmentally appropriate manner while simultaneously exploring issues surrounding Catholic identity, inter-culturalism, religious diversity and the importance of promoting respect for all pupils. Catholic Religious Education nurtures the faith of children and is grounded in the person of Jesus Christ, in scripture and in the tradition. The programme takes seriously the example of Jesus, particularly in regard to the priority of the inclusion of the poor and marginalised in primary school classrooms.

The Certificate in Multi-Belief and Ethical Curricula (BEd4, BOide4 and PME2) enhances students' awareness and understanding of the core values and principles underpinning Educate Together and Community National School models at primary level in Ireland.  It provides students with the knowledge and skills to teach the patron's curricula in equality-based or multi-denominational schools.  A certificate is awarded to students who successfully complete the module which assists with their applications to teach in multi-denominational or equality-based schools.  


The Centre for Religious Education is committed to research in the field of religious education.  It is interested in a variety of subjects related to religious education and encourages partnership and inter-institutional initiatives. Collaboration with Mary Immaculate College and the GRACE Research Network has led to conference presentations and publications in the area of Teacher Identity and Attitudes to Religious Education; Belief Fluidity, and Developing a Catholic Research Ethic.

In line with the MIE Guiding Principles, the centre is also committed to inter-belief dialogue, inclusion and the promotion of good practice in teaching and learning.  National Guidelines were commissioned by the Joint Managerial Body and authored by the director of the Centre, Dr Aiveen Mullally on the Inclusion of Students of Different Beliefs in Catholic Secondary Schools (2010 / 2019).

Dialogue and Outreach

Annual Round Table Discussion and Dinner

Since 2009 the Centre for Religious Education has hosted an annual round table discussion and dinner at MIE for those involved in Catholic education in Ireland.  Our intention for the evening is to offer a forum for dialogue and to assist partners in their roles as advocates for Catholic education within schools, education circles, with the media and within a secular society. A key-note speaker is selected each year to speak to a relevant theme.  Some of the themes explored over the years have been:

  • Theological Foundations for Inter-Religious Dialogue (Dr Dermot Lane)
  • The Place of Religion in the Public Square (Prof Anne Looney)
  • Faith Development and Catholic Education (Baroness Nuala O’ Loan)
  • Denominational Education and the Common Good (Dr David Touhy)
  • Leadership in Catholic Schools (Dr Clare Watkins)
  • The Media and Perceptions of Religious Education in Ireland (Roger Childs)
  • Faith in a Time of Crisis: Spirituality and Covid 19 (Edwina Gately)
  • Relationship and Sexuality Education (RSE): A Challenge or Opportunity for Catholic Schools? (Vivek da Silva)
  • Catholic Schools and Climate Justice (Dr Lorna Gold)

Continuing Professional Development

The Centre for Religious Education offers outreach to various patron bodies and school Trusts to provide on-going professional development with school staffs, school leaders and RE teachers in the various areas related to religious education; school ethos; the inclusion of different beliefs; spiritual leadership; self-care and wellbeing.

Contact [email protected] for more information.