October 2017 Newsletter

ELFSC Research News; Language Centre; Meeting Deputy Vice Chancellor; For your Diary; Pride Week -Flag Raising; New Precinct; Enabling to Undergraduate applications; Congratulations; Student Mentor Program; Footy Tipping; First Aid Officers; Work, Health & Safety

ELFSC Research News

Writing Program for Equity Practitioners

Professor Penny Jane Burke (CEEHE) and Anna Bennett have been piloting a one year sector-wide writing project for equity practitioners, teachers and university/enabling lecturers. The project is based on a similar model which has run successfully in the United Kingdom at Sheffield Hallam University and is now being expanded as a joint UK and Australian program.

The aim of the Writing Program for Equity & Widening Participation Practitoners has been to support equity practitioners to write up (an aspect of) their work for submission to a refereed journal. This is to ensure that good practice is being disseminated as widely as possible, to enable practitioners to bring their work to different audiences, and to help them to develop their writing and dissemination skills.

One of the workshop series was recently held at NeW Space.

Watch the video here

Upcoming Research Activities

Wednesday 11 October -Research Professional & Library Information Session: 12-2pm

(Callaghan: MCG56/ Ourimbah: Gibalee Centre conference room - upstairs in the library)

The October Research(er) Development workshop will include two presenters:

Kate Hayes (Research Services) will be explaining how to use Research Professional to find grants, awards, fellowships, and other opportunities suited to your research interests.

Senior Research Librarian Ruth Talbot-Stokes will be providing strategies and tips for using library resources and databases. Ruth would like to use real project examples so please get in touch with Jo by Friday 6th October if you want your research to feature.

Lunch provided – RSVP essential

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

Back to Top

Language Centre

Jilin University of Finance and Economics

Language Centre Program Convenor Ben Doran and Deputy Program Convenor Janielle Wilson recently completed a visit to the Jilin University of Finance and Economics (JUFE). JUFE is located in the Chinese city of Changchun, the capital of Jilin province. The institution delivers the centre’s Upper Intermediate and EAP programs for students enrolled in 2+2 programs with the University of Newcastle’s Faculty of Business and Law. At present, approximately 70 students are currently enrolled in the 2+2 program with a significant percentage of these students expected to access one of the two Language Centre programs offered in Changchun prior to commencing the Newcastle component of their studies. During the visit, Ben and Janielle met with senior JUFE representatives and were also able to hold detailed discussions with managers, teachers and students involved in the program, providing valuable insight into offshore course delivery.

Student Recruitment and Password

Language Centre Program Convenor Ben Doran recently visited three key student recruitment agents in China who have been included in the centre’s pilot program of the Password English Language Test. Agencies visited included EIC in Guangzhou and JJL and AOJI in Beijing. During the visits, Ben met with staff responsible for the recruitment of students to Australian universities including Newcastle, and explained the advantages of using the new online test which is slated to replace the paper based placement test and offer all stakeholders a more reliable, efficient and secure means of generating an initial ELICOS offer for students applying to UON programs. Meetings were also a valuable opportunity to speak directly to agents regarding the benefits to students of accessing Language Centre courses prior to their transition to their destination programs, and to collect valuable feedback on general market trends.

Language Centre students took part in a diverse range of activities this month, many of which were organized under the umbrella of the centre’s Student Engagement Program coordinated by Anne Burnett. In August the University staged its annual Cultural Awakenings Festival. As part of the festival, Language Centre students participated in a number of events. Over thirty students attended the Wollotuka Institute’s Immersion III program; an evening celebrating community through dance, music and food. In addition, Language Centre students and teachers featured prominently in the Parade of Nations event.

Former Language Centre student Liu Ze recently completed a piece of art for the UON Create 2308 event. As part of the celebration of the creative arts at the university, Liu was provided with a grant of $1500 from the UoN Central team to create a work of street art that was displayed near Bar on the Hill. A photo of Zed’s piece is shown below.

Finally, several Language Centre students participated in discussions held at NeW Space in conjunction with R U OK? Day. The R U OK? mission is to inspire and empower everyone to meaningfully connect with people around them and support anyone struggling with life; certainly an agenda that many of our international students would be able to relate to.

Back to Top

Meeting the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic)

On 14 September, the DVC (A), Professor Darrell Evans, met 10 of our group of asylum seekers (some of the students were working at that time) who are undertaking our Open Foundation Program. Professor Evans was impressed by their progress. The students praised the amazing support they received specifically from Simone and Liza, and generally from academic and professional staff in the Centre.

Back to Top

For Your Diary

Reminder - You’re Invited: Academic Division Awards and Service Recognition

Staff will have received an email from the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) inviting us to a celebration of the hard work within the Division. This will be held on Wednesday 18 October at 3pm in The Chancellery foyer.

As well as achievement highlights, we will be celebrating the commitment of staff who have reached the milestone of 15 and 25 years’ service to the University.

Back to Top

Pride Week – Flag Raising 11 September

As part of the Pride Week celebrations from 11 September to 15 September at UON, the Rainbow Flag was raised for the first time at Callaghan Campus demonstrating UON’s commitment to principles of equity, diversity, inclusion and culture for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex and queer (LGBTIQ) community at the University of Newcastle. Thank you to all staff and students that came along in support of this significant milestone event for UON.

Back to Top

A new precinct for enabling at Callaghan

In July last year our Director alerted us to the plan to establish an Enabling precinct for our enabling students and staff at Callaghan. Preliminary planning is underway with IFS and Project staff for a move to a refurbished space in the GP building (Ground Floor, Level 1 and Level 2).

One of the priorities in the design of this precinct is a comfortable, dynamic student hub and gathering space for our students. This will be located on the Ground Floor, along with consultation rooms and some staff workspaces. It will be the focal point for front-line services to our students. Levels 1 and 2 will include workspaces for staff, a meeting room, consultation rooms, informal breakout spaces, classrooms and staff rooms.

The Project Team will be meeting over the coming months to further develop our requirements, with an anticipated occupancy sometime in 2019.

Back to Top

Enabling to Undergraduate applications are now open

Open Foundation, Newstep and Yapug students who will complete (or have completed) their program in 2017, are able to apply directly for entry to an undergraduate degrees at UON in 2018.  Applications via this free, direct application process opened in early September. Students wishing to apply for the Bachelor of Midwifery or Bachelor if Medical Science/Doctor of Medicine programs must still apply via the Universities Admission Centre (UAC).  Students are permitted to choose up to 3 preferences for UON degrees.  Applications close at midnight 3 December 2018.

Students who may completed an enabling program prior to 2017 must apply for all degrees through UAC.

For more information click here.

Back to Top


The winner of the English Language and Foundation Studies Centre Award for Excellence in Teaching and Learning-Enabling is Heath Bonnefin. Heath is awarded the prize ‘For development of an efficacious pedagogy for Legal Studies which inspired students and improved course satisfaction’. He will be awarded a certificate and the prize of $2000 at the next ELFSC public event. The panel were particularly impressed by the strong disciplinary underpinning of his application and the evidence provided for improvement in student experience and learning outcomes.

Sharlene Leroy-Dyer has been elected as the ELFSC representative to the University of Newcastle Academic Senate. Congratulations Sharlene, we will value your representation and keeping us all in touch with what is happening at that important committee.

The Director also congratulates all enabling staff on their teaching. Recent data from SSP shows that in semester 1, 2017, ELFSC had the highest percentage of courses in the SFCs rated from 4 to 5 at UoN (93.3%). The remaining courses were rated from 3 to 4 with no courses rated under 3. This is an impressive result and an improvement from our already impressive score of 88.3% of courses rated from 4 to 5 in 2016. The positive feedback from our students is a testament to the work of our lecturers, tutors and teachers in our Programs as well as to the support of our Professional Staff. Thank you all, and let us continue to enhance our work with our course review processes, peer support and professional development.

Back to Top

Applications for 2018 - Open Foundation, Newstep and Yapug

Yapug and Open Foundation – direct applications will open on Wednesday 1 November, 2017
Newstep – direct applications will open on Monday 4 December 2017 (School leavers can already add Newstep as a preference through UAC)

The closing date for all enabling applications (Open Foundation, Yapug and Newstep) is Wednesday 31 January.

Applications are submitted via the Online Direct Application system (ODA).  Links to the ODA will be live on the relevant program web page at the appropriate opening time.

Student Mentor Program – Enabling Students

Jessica Burden, Holly Dillon and Sharon Boyd successfully re-introduced the Student Mentor Program to the Intensive Open Foundation student cohort this semester.The program was trialled with the Intensive cohort supported by the Access and Transition team in Student Central who manage the on campus program.

At Callaghan we had a total of 4 Mentors with 19 students registering as Mentees; at Ourimbah we had 3 Mentors with 7 students registering as Mentees. Holly and Sharon both agree it has been a hugely successful program and even though it was a small group, it was a great way to start the program off allowing us to manage it effectively. We were very fortunate in the students who took on the Mentoring role, as not only were they very talented and experienced students, but the Mentors were reassuring and understanding, providing our students with the support they needed.

Counsellor Gemma Edgar also came on board at Callaghan providing the Mentors with Boundaries Training and how to best support the students they were allocated.

We look forward to continuing the program in 2018!

Back to Top

ELFSC Footy Tipping

The winners of the 2017 ELFSC Footy Tipping Competition have been finalised.  Congratulations to: Michele Mackay (1st), Peter Corke (2nd), Rob Morgan (3rd) and Chelsea Trimble (4th). Many thanks to Dave Thompson for getting all punters on board and organised.

Back to Top

First Aid Officer Callaghan change

Maureen Jones will no longer be taking on the responsibility of First Aid Officer at Callaghan. In her place Leah Hill will return as a First Aid Officer Monday through to Wednesday until the end of the year. Thank you Maureen for your dedication and hard work over the last year, the ELFSC staff and student cohorts are grateful to have been in your safe hands whilst on campus.

The other First Aid Officers on duty at Callaghan are Chelsea Trimble, Alison Delaney, Michele Mackay and Nicholas Barham.

At the Sydney Campus the ELFSC First Aid Officer is Patricia Kisiel.

For any first aid related matters, please seek out one of the above First Aid Officers for assistance.

Back to Top

Work Health & Safety

In case of an emergency on campus, please follow the instructions of an Emergency Warden at all times. Emergency Wardens are identified by yellow or red hats and high vis Warden vests.

At Callaghan campus, the Emergency Wardens are Dave Thompson, Jenny Williams and Chelsea Trimble.

At Ourimbah Campus, the Emergency Warden is Chris Dowman.

At Sydney Campus, the Emergency Warden is Patricia Kisiel.

Our staff representatives on the Academic Division Health & Safety Committee are An-Chi Baxter and Lynette Dennis. Joyleen Christensen is also a member of the Ourimbah Health & Safety Committee.

In Sydney, Barbara Mansfield is Chair of the WH&S Committee.

If there are ongoing issues of concern in relation to the health and safety of staff and students, these should be raised in the first instance with your supervisor/manager or work group, and/or forwarded to An-Chi, Lynette, Joyleen or Barbara for follow up through the formal committee process.

Back to Top

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 Jenny WilliamsMaureen Jones or Leah Hill.