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Personal profile

Personal profile

Mahsheed Ansari is a Senior Lecturer in Islam and Contemporary Islamic Studies and the Higher Degrees Research Coordinator at the Centre for Islamic Studies & Civilisation, Charles Sturt University. She is also a Researcher (Trans-disciplinary Stream), Public and Contextual Theology (PACT), Charles Sturt University. Mahsheed has been a reader in Islamic thought for over 18 years. She is also community activist working in the areas of interfaith dialogue, social harmony and leadership-mentoring programs with Muslim youth and Muslim women for over a decade.

Mahsheed is currently lecturing and coordinating these subjects; Muslims in Australia, Muslims in the West, Islamic Worldview, Essentials of Islamic Spirituality, Islamic Morality & Ethics and Purification of the Heart. Her research interests include the history of Islamic thought, spirituality and culture. As a historian she is interested in the migration, settlement, formation and development of Muslim communities as minority communities in Australia. She is currently working on the Muslim heritage research project at the Public and Contextual Theology Research Centre at Charles Sturt University and is the chief investigator of the Dr Ashfaq Ahmad Biography Project.

Community Work

Executive Member, Islamic Sciences and Research Academy of Australia
Chairperson, International Hope School, Dhaka, Bangladesh
Board Member, Amity College, Sydney, Australia
Advisory Panel, Mind Medicine Australia, Australia

Research Interests

Mahsheed’s most current research project focuses on capturing Muslim History in Australia. She is working on capturing the oral history of Muslim pioneers in Australia and the general broader history Muslim migration, settlement and life in Australia.

Mahsheed’s other research area include transnational and transcultural Islamic movements and Islamic Sacred Texts & Theology. She continues to contribute to the field of Nursian Studies and Iqbaliyyat.

Research Areas

  • History of Islam and Muslims in Australia
  • Oral History & Migration History
  • Transnational and Transcultural Islamic Movements
  • Islamic Sacred Texts & Theology
  • The history of Islamic Thought, Spirituality and Culture
  • South Asian Studies
  • Middle Eastern Studies
  • Nursian Studies
  • Iqbaliyyat Studies
  • Islamic Studies & Religion & Society.

Current Research Projects

Biography Project:
A journey through Australia's Muslim Heritage: The Life and Times of Dr Qazi Ashfaq Ahmad 

Mahsheed Ansari (Chief Investigator)
Katy Nebhan

Routledge Monograph:

Rationalising the Theology: Modern debates on the prophethood in the understanding of Iqbal and Nursi, Routledge, 2021.


HDR Supervision

Mahsheed coordinates the higher degrees research degrees at CISAC. She has capacity to take on Principal Supervision of doctoral thesis in her related fields of research.

She is currently the co-supervisor of the following research topics:

  1. Emre Celik, American Perceptions of Fethullah Gulen and the Hizmet Movement (PhD)
  2. Leila Khaled, Investigating the implementation and efficacy of online Special Religious Education class intervention: Case study of Islamic scripture classes
  3. (PhD)
  4. Carol Mroue, Healing from psychological trauma of domestic violence from an Islamic perspective: A Case Study of Australian Muslim women. (PhD)
  5. Mukesh Chander, Citizenship, Alienation, and The Stripping of Citizenship From Mujahideen: A Constitutional Justification. (PhD)
  6. Saliha Saluk, Character Education Strategies in Hizmet and Deobandi based educational institutions: A Comparative Analysis (PhD)

Research Grants

  • Public & Contextual Theology Research Project Grant Book Publication, Prophethood in Islam according to Nursi and Iqbal (Routledge) , $5, 500, 2020.
  • Charles Sturt University, Faculty of Arts & Education Research Assistant Grant, $14,500, 2019.
  • Cumberland Council, Capturing Community Histories in the Cumberland LGA, $8000, 2019.
  • Public & Contextual Theology Research Project Grant, A Journey through Australia’s Muslim Heritage, $9,500, 2019
  • Community Grant $22,000 Integrated Family Education and Welfare, Muslim History Project, 2017-2019
  • Charles Sturt University, Faculty of Arts & Education Endeavour Research Grant, $15,000, 2017-2018.
  • Public & Contextual Theology Research Project Grant, A Journey through Australia’s Muslim Heritage, $25,000, 2017-2018.
  • Durham University: Postgraduate Research Support Award (Conference Travel) ($1,200), 2008.
  • Istanbul Foundation of Culture and Science - Travel Grant (Overseas Research/Training) Nursi Graduate Conference, 2011.
  • Monash University: Postdoctoral Research Travel Grant (Overseas Research) ($1,415), 2013.
  • Islamic University of Jakarta- Postgraduate Research Support Award (Conference Travel)- 2010.


Mahsheed has a background in Historical & Islamic studies, she is currently lecturing in units on the development of Islamic Thought, Spirituality and Ethics. She is also teaching contemporary units related to Muslims and the Islamic belief and practice. Her subject specialities include the Islamic faith tradition, Muslims in the West, especially looking at the history of Australian Muslims.

Mahsheed along with her teaching colleagues at CISAC won the Faculty of Arts and Education’s teaching award for significant refocus of teaching strategies within the School in online delivery and the enhanced professional practice of the teaching team.

Subjects Taught:

ISL260 Introduction to Arabic Language 

ISL181 Sirah: Life of Prophet Muhammad
ISL353 World Religions in Australia
ISL355/ISL455 Women in Islam and Islamic Cultures

ISL383 Islamic History from 632-Present
ISL599 Guided Research in Islamic Studies 


Currently Teaching:

ISL270 Purification of the Heart (Session II)
ISL404 Islamic Wordlview (Session I)
ISL453 Muslims in the West (Session II)
ISL456 Muslims in Australia (Session III)
ISL470/ISL170 Essentials of Islamic Spirituality (Session I)
ISL471/ISL171 Islamic Morality (Akhlaq) and Character (Session III)

Teaching Competencies 

The Islamic Intellectual Tradition (especially Islamic Theology and History)
Islamic Ethics, Spirituality and Mysticism
Islam and Modernity/Globalisation
Islam and Muslim Minority Communities in Non-Muslim Societies
Islam and World Religions
Gender and Women in Islam
Islamic History (especially Life of the Prophet Muhammad)

Professional Information

Membership of Professional Organisations

 Member/Author, Australian Journal of Islamic Studies [AJIS]

  Member, Australian Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies (AAIMS)

  Member, Australian Association for the Study of Religions [AASR]

  Member, Islamic Community Academics Network (ICAN) 

  Member, Oral History of NSW & Oral History Australia Network

  Member, Australian Centre for Public History [ACPH]

  Member, American Academy of Religion [AAR]

  Member, Muslim Legal Network (NSW)

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions


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