March 2016 Newsletter

Language Centre News; Staffing News; Prior Enabling Undergraduate Offers; Orientation; For the Diary; Health and Safety

Research Newsletter

For all the latest news on research in the centre please read the Research Newsletter

Language Centre News

The Language Centre in Callaghan welcomes 117 students from 14 countries to start ELICOS in the 2nd block of the year.  The 3 largest cohorts are from Japan, China and Saudi Arabia, followed closely by India.  The other countries are Germany, Iran, Korea, Kuwait, Mongolia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Spain, Thailand and Vietnam.

February and March are one of the times in which our Japanese partners send students to study abroad under their government’s global mobility scheme.   Sixty Japanese students that make up the largest cohort are from Doshisha University, Hakodate University, Kagoshima Immaculate Heart College, University of Kitakyushu, Musashino University, Yamaguchi University and Yamaguchi Prefectural University.

In Sydney, the Language Centre is currently running 9 classes over 2 shifts with 136 students. The nationality mix is China 40.7%; Mongolia 23.6%; India 19.3% and Vietnam 12%. Other nationalities include Cambodia, Jordan, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia.

The Student Experience Program has implemented 2 new community activities to ELICOS students –

  1. the Beehive Industries  discussion groups with workshop participants
  2. The Welcome Dinner Project - community dinners hosted by Australians

The iLEAD program (ex ELICOS) is also running a new activity Talk and Walk sessions for current ELICOS students.  Sydney ELICOS is introducing lectures from the NBS academics to commence in March.  The first lecture will be run by Dr Laura Luo.

Sue Hodgson and Louise Noell presented their paper entitled "Pronunciation Can be Fun!" To a large audience at the CamTESOL Conference in Phnom Penh, Cambodia last week. The CamTESOL Conference is the largest ELT Conference in SE Asia.

Our two language centres are currently undertaking the International Student Barometer (ISB) Survey which is funded by the Australian Government and English Australia. The Survey will enable both centres to benchmark themselves against both private and public language centres across Australia. The outcomes of previous surveys have affirmed the good work we are doing to enhance the student experience as well as suggest areas of improvement. The work of Janielle Wilson and Keely McCauley in ensuring student engagement in this survey is greatly appreciated.

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Staffing News

Conjoint Appointment

The Vice Chancellor has approved the appointment of Associate Professor Jo May as a Conjoint Associate Professor to the ELFS Centre. This is the first time that we have had a conjoint appointed to the Centre and we are very pleased it is Jo.  In her role as conjoint Jo will assist in furthering the research effort in our Centre.
Congratulations Jo!

Yapug Program Convenor

One of the recommendations of last year’s Yapug Review was that we appoint a full-time Yapug Convenor on a 3 year contract.  After discussions with the Wollotuka Institute it was felt that this appointment may take time to finalise and so it was decided to appoint an interim Program Convenor.  Following an EOI for the role, Sharlene Leroy-Dyer will be the Yapug Convenor & Indigenous Enabling Academic Advisor until June.

The reason for the added title is that both Wollotuka and ELFS are aware that there are a number of indigenous students in other enabling programs that this role can assist.  Professor Lester has kindly agree to the secondment of Sharlene from Wollotuka to ELFS.  Sharlene will operate out of both McMullin (MCLG55) and Birabahn buildings and will teach in Yapug and the Aboriginal Studies course in Open Foundation. Sharlene has had a long association with enabling programs and Yapug. Please welcome Sharlene to her new role.


Michelle Challinor has resigned after 15 years in ELFSC. Michelle made many outstanding contributions to the on campus and online Open Foundation programs, UON Prep and the Centre as a whole. As well as her work with ELFSC, Michelle also taught casually in the School of Environmental and Life Sciences at Ourimbah where she was also recognised for her strong discipline knowledge, teaching quality and focus on the student experience. Michelle has moved on to continue her teaching career outside the University and we wish her all the best for the future.

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Prior Enabling Students 2016 Undergraduate Offers

There were 1643 domestic enabling students who received undergraduate offers via UAC or direct to UON in 2016: 1424 students were offered an undergraduate place at UON (86.7%) and 219 prior-enabling students received offers to other Universities (13.3%).

Please note: these are for offers only, not acceptance of offers.

Prior ProgramTotal Offers
Open Foundation1016
Prior ProgramOffers at UON
Open Foundation893
Yapug 22
Prior ProgramOffers at other Institutes
Open Foundation123

*These are known offers made to UON enabling students via UAC.

Students may also have received direct offers to other institutions in NSW outside of UAC. Students may also have received offers to other institutions in other Australian states and/or territories.

A special mention is made of the 3 Yapug students who received an offer in 2016 to the Bachelor of Medicine.

For a further breakdown of offers by undergraduate program, contact Sally Curzi, Quality Assurance Teaching and Learning Officer (ext 18801).

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In the week beginning 8 February, ELFSC held a number of Orientation and Program Information sessions for the commencing (on campus) 2015 cohort of students in Open Foundation, Newstep and Yapug.

At Callaghan on 10 February, Orientation sessions were held for Yapug, Open Foundation (2 sessions) and Newstep. At Ourimbah, Open Foundation Orientation was held on Saturday 13 February, and Newstep on Friday 12 February. Newstep students at each campus were also treated to a free welcome BBQ.

Newstep BBQ at Orientation

All sessions were well attended, and as always a special thank you is extended to our former students who actively play an important role as assistants and speakers at these events. This year the students were highly visible in their new T-Shirts.

Yapug Orientation Day 2016

The Open Foundation online students commenced their Week Zero activities on 15 February.

Open Foundation Orientation Day 2016

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For the Diary

ELFSC Staff Forum - Tuesday 5 April

The first ELFSC Staff Forum and lunch will be held from 12 noon to 1pm on Tuesday 5 April 2016 (venue to be advised). All staff of the Centre will be invited to attend.

Recognition of Attainment Ceremony (ROAC) – Callaghan - Thursday 7 April

The Recognition of Attainment ceremony for ELFSC and Newcastle International College will be held at 6pm on Thursday 7 April at the Great Hall, Callaghan Campus. The Chancellor will present Attainment Certificates to our students who completed Open Foundation, Yapug and Newstep programs in 2015.

We are looking forward to hearing from our 3 student speakers who will outline how enabling education transformed their lives. We are also pleased to have as our Occasional Speaker, Frank van de Mortel, a former Open Foundation graduate and now practising psychologist.

All staff are encouraged to participate in this significant and celebratory event. Staff will have recently received receive an email from the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) about the graduation ceremonies. As per the email, staff members wishing to participate in our attainment ceremony must complete the online registration form by close of business Friday 11 March.

Staff members in the academic procession are required to either bring their own academic dress, or hire academic dress at their own expense.

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Health and Safety

With the current warm temperatures being experienced, staff are more frequently relying on pedestal fans and other cooling appliances in an attempt to work comfortably.  Please take extra care to ensure that all electrical appliances are turned off in periods when the office or work area is unattended, and at the end of each day.

Please check the Work Health and Safety web page for current safety alerts.

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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 or queries to Jenny Williams, Leah Hill or Maureen Jones.