February 2019

From the Director; For your Diary; Language Centre News; Research News; Work Health & Safety

From the Interim Director

It is my pleasure to introduce the first issue of the ELFSC newsletter of 2019 and to extend a warm welcome to our new and existing staff as we work together to provide exciting educational experiences and opportunities for our students. UONPREP, orientation sessions and the enabling attainment ceremony are some of the exciting activities taking place this month. There are many other important activities and achievements to celebrate, some of which are outlined in the following pages.

Thank you for your commitment to our students and wishing you all the best for an enjoyable and successful 2019.


Dr Anna Bennett | Interim Director

For your Diary

Callaghan Recognition of Attainment Ceremony (ROAC)

The University’s 2019 Callaghan Recognition of Attainment ceremony (ROAC) for our enabling students will be held at the Griffith Duncan Theatre, Callaghan at 5:00pm on Tuesday 12 February 2019.

Staff and friends of ELFSC are encouraged to participate in “our” ceremony, either as part of the academic procession or within the congregation. We’d like as many of our staff to fill the stage.  If you are attending, please complete the online registration form by Friday 8 February 2019.

Orientation Dates

Open Foundation and Newstep events will be based at the Great Hall.

Yapug Orientation will be held in the Birabahn Building and Ourimbah events will be in Lecture Theatre 2.

Open Foundation5:30pm -Thursday 14 February - Great Hall5:30pm - Wednesday 13 February -Lecture Theatre 2
Yapug10am -Thursday 14 February - Birabahn Buidling 
Newstep11am -Tuesday 19 February - Great Hall10am - Wednesday 13 February -Lecture Theatre 2

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Language Centre News

Callaghan Campus

Student Numbers

The Callaghan campus of the Language Centre had a strong first intake for the year with 76 students commencing their studies in January, and 243 students in total over the first five weeks of 2019. This number was bolstered by a large number of ELICOS-only students from Korean institution Cheju Halla.

Over 150 new students will arrive for the second intake on February 11th. Of these, we are expecting 85 ELICOS-only students from Japan as well as 10 Study Abroad students from Doshisha University. Our ELICOS-only students come from a range of our long-term partner institutions in Japan and will stay from anywhere between 4 and 40 weeks.


February will also see new coordinators for the Language Centre:

  • Janielle Wilson will take on the Direct-Entry Program coordinator responsibilities (EAP and Upper Intermediate)
  • Adam Connor will take on the General English Program coordinator responsibilities (Intermediate and Elementary)

Both candidates bring valuable skills to the role and are enthusiastic to begin this new challenge. At the same time, we would like to say a big thankyou to the following out-going coordinators for all their great work:  Louise Noell, Louise Pavey and Jacky Worsdell.


Most people will know that Callaghan’s Student Experience Program and its award winning Passport is coordinated by Anne Burnett. However, Anne is also ably supported by two SEP assistants; Elisa Choudery and Cherub Lum.  See below for a brief introduction of these two members who make a valuable contribution to SEP at Callaghan.

Elisa (Elly) Choudery worked for eight years as a Speech Pathologist in Germany and functioned as clinical educator and coordinator in a clinic, a kindergarten and a private practice before she decided to bring her career to the next level and to study a higher research degree. In March 2018 she came to Australia and undertook the ELICOS EAP before starting with her research. In September 2018, Elly started to work as a casual Student Engagement Coordinator Assistant at the Language Centre and implements Student Passport activities, such as Speed conversation or the “Ready to Talk” program.

Cherub is from Canada and is studying to become a registered dietitian here at the University of Newcastle.  She has a strong background in sports, playing four years on the Women’s Basketball Varsity team at the University of British Columbia at the Canadian University Level. Aside from sports, she loves to cook and travel to discover new foods from diverse cultures. Being able to help others through her passion for living a healthy lifestyle is one of her main goals in her future career as a dietician. Working with Language Centre students gives her an opportunity to exemplify the values of a healthy lifestyle through interacting with the students during World Sports Day and Cooking on Campus here at UON.

Sydney Campus

The New Year has swung into action with many student engagement activities up and running. A new program called Knit and Speak commenced in week 2 based on the Wrap with Love Knitting program held early last year. The difference is this year the program is held on site. Students are taught to knit squares which are then sewn together to make small blankets which are donated to charities. Another initiative is Student Film Club held every second Monday and led by an ELICOS student leader. Also continuing is Conversation Club at the local Community Centre led by a student leader every second Thursday and English Circle held once a fortnight and run by the UoN Student Welfare team. Another event was the Beach Safety Workshop held during lunch time in week 2 by Surf Lifesaving NSW –always an important topic at this time of year. Michelle Picard & Keely McCauley Excellence in Teaching and Learning Award

The Sydney Language Centre was proud to celebrate the 2018 ELFSC Excellence in Teaching and Learning Award which was won by Keely McCauley- Deputy Program Convenor. Keely was presented with a framed certificate at a special afternoon tea attended by the Deputy Director Michelle Picard late last year.

Research News

International Studies in Widening Participation - New 'Student Voice' Section

International Studies in Widening Participation is pleased to introduce Student Photo of Anna & TaylahVoice, a new section of the journal with the express intention of providing former enabling students with an opportunity to critically reflect on their experiences in an access program and to write about its impact on their educational journey. Hearing from students who are the beneficiaries of widening participation policies provides the ISWP readership with an important flipside to the work of academics and practitioners. Student Voice is an annual ‘best paper’ prize of $500 open to former enabling students from across Australia who have since entered or graduated from undergraduate/postgraduate study.

The inaugural Student Voice paper by former Yapug student Taylah Gray appeared in the journal’s most recent Issue - Volume 5, Number 2. Taylah, who in 2019 commences her fourth year of undergraduate study at UON (Bachelor of Law/Bachelor of Aboriginal Professional Practice), contributed a moving and insightful paper titled The danger of a single story: Gari Yala (speak the truth).

Professor Marie-Pierre Moreau of Anglia Ruskin University in the UK and co-editor of the journal, wrote in her editorial for the Issue:

Taylah Gray’s [paper] … provides an illuminating account of her educational experience and broader life. The story she tells is both personal and political, individual and collective. Most importantly, Gray tells us a story of exclusion and of social change – a social change facilitated by the enacting of pedagogies of resistance.

Click here to read Taylah’s paper.

2019 Conferences related to Enabling, Access, T & L and Higher Education

Name/ OrganisationDatesThemeSubmission DeadlineRegistration
HERDSA (Higher Education Research and Development Society of Australasia)

2-5 July

University of Auckland, NZ

Next Generation, Higher Education: Challenges, Changes & Opportunities

14 February

Early bird closes 30 May
FACE (Forum for Access and Continuing Education)

3-5 July

Sheffield Hallam University, UK

STARS (Students Transitions Achievement Retention & Success)

7-10 July

Crown Promenade, Melbourne

Students Transitions Achievement Retention & Success

1 FebruaryEarly bird closes 30 April
ISSOTL (International Society for the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning)9-12 October Atlanta, Georgia, US

SoTL Without Borders: Engaged Practices for Social Change

TBA in FebruaryEarly bird closes 2 September

24-27 November

University of Wollongong

Enabling Excellence through Equity

31 MayEarly bird closes 30 July
AARE (Australian Association for Research in Education)

1-5 December


Education for a Socially-Just World

SHRE (Society for Research into Higher Education)

TBA December



NAEEA Annual Membership - Now due

$80 for individuals –if you are interested in becoming a member or are due to renew, click here to send an email to or go to their website

Research Support in 2019

Watch out for emails from Jo Hanley, ELFSC Research Manager, regarding grant opportunities, research PD, and the call for applications for the ELFSC New Research Concept grant scheme (1 x $3000 grant available this year – conditions apply). For tailored, one-on-one support please make an appointment with Jo via email.

Please make contact with Jo if you have any research news or project updates for future newsletters.

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Work Health & Safety

After-Hours Support Line – Update to SMS chat number and Support Service Referral Document

The University of Newcastle provides an after-hours crisis support phone line between 5pm to 9am weekdays, and 24 hours over the weekends and public holidays. This service is available for students who need to speak to someone urgently outside of business hours. The SMS chat number has recently changed to 0488 884 165, so please make sure you update it on your Blackboard site or anywhere you include it for students. The old chat number will currently provide an automated response directing them to the correct number.

As part of the information that you provide to students about support on Blackboard, you can provide a link here 

The service is also available to staff to access after-hours, but if it is not a crisis please refer to Campus Care for advice and support in managing inappropriate, concerning or threatening behaviours in a safe and confidential environment.  Attached is a handy document that ELFSC staff may like to use when they require support or if they are wanting to refer students to appropriate services. You may like to pop this on your desktop or even print a copy as a handy reminder. This reference sheet is a staff facing document and has not been written with students in mind, if you feel you would like student facing material on any service (either hard copy or electronic) please contact one of the Enabling counsellors.  As indicated in the handout, an online reporting form is available for anyone to make a report in regards to inappropriate, concerning or worrying behaviours.

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Items for the ELFSC Link Newsletter are always welcome. The newsletter is published early each month, with items due 2 weeks prior to publication.  

Please forward any items to Maureen Jones or Leah Hill.