Mr. Leo-Martin Angelo R. Ocampo, MA, faculty member of the Institute of Religion and Academic Collaboration Officer of the Ecclesiastical Faculties, presented UST’s response to the call for evangelization, during the Association of Catholic Universities of the Philippines (ACUP) Convention in Davao City, held from January 17-19, 2019.
In his presentation, Ocampo highlighted the importance of connecting charism, or using the gifts received from the Lord, with context, or the specific needs and concerns of the people being served. “We are called to evangelize by who we are, and we must do it in a way that is suited to where we are,” Ocampo told fellow academics.
Ocampo presented the framework behind the signature pedagogy utilized by the Institute of Religion in delivering theology classes to tertiary students of UST: “Dominican-Thomistic Education by Design (DoT-ED).”
The framework, which was inspired by the Salamanca Process, follows these steps: 1. Study; 2. Research; 3. Analysis; and 4. Observe. This framework, according to Ocampo, closely reflects the Scholastic method of disputatio exemplified by Saint Thomas Aquinas himself in Summa Theologiae. Ocampo argued that the disputatio, although sometimes misjudged as dated and medieval, “is actually very compatible with more recent models such as the systems approach and inquiry-based learning, and is very much constructivist and research-based, allowing for a true synthesis of faith and reason after a necessary struggle with confusion, contention, and conflict.”
Ocampo further argues that the method of Aquinas actually resonates with 21st-century skills, particularly its 4 Cs: critical thinking; communication; collaboration; and creativity.
In closing, Ocampo highlighted the fractal synergy that can be translated across the levels of Dominican-Thomistic education: course, co-curricular and University activities, program, and University. According to Ocampo, if this were to be followed, “the charism of the Order becomes not only an implicit part of the ‘hidden curriculum’ but rightly reclaims its position at the very core, not only of the curriculum, but of the entire life of the University.”