La Trobe University

La Trobe University

August 15, 2019 0 By Stanley Isaacs


La Trobe University is an Australian
public university whose flagship campus, the largest metropolitan campus in the
country, is located in Melbourne, Victoria. The university was established
in 1964 following the assent of the La Trobe University Act by Victorian
Parliament on 9 December of that year, becoming the third university in the
State. While it does not share the architectural aesthetics of its
sandstone peers, at its core La Trobe, as much as Monash, was ‘among the last
of the old universities in Australia.’ Of the many aspirations set upon La
Trobe by its distinguished founders, one of its most prominent achievements, and
a great source of university pride, has been its long-standing commitment to
providing access to higher education to those traditionally excluded from the
sector. In 2015 it was ranked in the top 100 universities under 50 in the Times
Higher Education World University Rankings.
La Trobe’s flagship campus is located in the Melbourne suburb of Bundoora with
two other major campuses located in the regional Victorian city of Bendigo and
in the twin border cities of Albury-Wodonga. The university has two
smaller regional campuses in Mildura and Shepparton, and three minor CBD
campuses: two in Melbourne on Franklin Street and Collins Street, and one on
York Street in Sydney. La Trobe offers undergraduate and
postgraduate courses across its two colleges of Arts, Social Science and
Commerce and Science, Health and Engineering. ASSC consists of the four
schools of Business, Education, Humanities and Social Sciences, and Law,
while SHE consists of the nine schools of Allied Health, Applied Systems
Biology, Cancer Medicine, Engineering and Mathematical Sciences, Life
Sciences, Molecular Sciences, Nursing and Midwifery, Psychology and Public
Health and Rural Health. La Trobe is considered to be
particularly strong in the area of arts and humanities; this was reflected in
the 2014 QS World University Rankings where it was ranked in the top 200
international universities for Arts and Humanities. It was ranked 38th in the
world in the fields of archaeology, ancient history and classics, while
sociology, communication, media studies and linguistics all scored in the top
100. It was also ranked in the top 100 universities for arts and humanities in
the 2014-15 Times Higher Education World University Rankings. La Trobe also
features a strong Masters of Business Administration program which has been
ranked in the top 200 Business Schools by QS Global Rankings since 2010. In
2014 the La Trobe MBA was ranked 14th in Asia, 4th in Australia and 2nd in
Victoria by QS Global Rankings. In terms of research quality, the
university exhibits strength in the areas of arts and humanities, and
biological and biotechnical sciences. In 2012 La Trobe was ranked 3rd in Victoria
in the Australian Research Council’s Excellence in Research for Australia
report. For most of its history La Trobe has
been regarded as a bastion of radical and progressive thought within
Australia, largely emanating from strong student activism at the university
during the 1960s and 1970s. While not as prevalent as it was in the 20th century,
it is a reputation that is still held. History
The passing of the Act of Victorian Parliament to establish La Trobe
University followed earlier University Acts to establish the University of
Melbourne and Monash University. The Minister of Education at the time and
the appointed planning council were ‘unanimous in their enthusiasm that the
new institution should be innovative in its approach’, and the university
adopted an academic structure based on schools of studies and a collegiate
format, where a large number of students lived on campus. At this time, Flinders
University and Macquarie University were also establishing a schools-based
system. Many prominent Victorians were involved
in La Trobe’s establishment process, and there was a strong belief that it was
important to increase research and learning in Victoria. One of the major
individuals involved was Davis McCaughey, who later became Governor of
Victoria. The university was named after Charles Joseph La Trobe, the first
Governor of Victoria, and the university motto, ‘whoever seeks shall find’, is
adapted from Charles La Trobe’s family motto. The La Trobe University Coat of
Arms incorporates the scallop shells from the La Trobe family bearings, the
Australian wedge-tailed eagle to represent Australia, and sprigs of heath
to represent Victoria.=Background=
The origins of La Trobe can be traced back to the post-World War II era where
there emerged a global recognition of the need to increase facilities for
higher education. In 1957 Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies established a special
committee to report on the future of Australian universities, inviting Sir
Keith Murray, Chairman of the University Grants Committee of Great Britain, to
chair it. The Murray Committee, in a far-reaching report submitted in
September 1957, recommend a major expansion of university facilities in
Australia, and changes in administration and financing.
As a direct consequence of the key recommendations of the Murray report,
the federal government established the Australian Universities Commission in
1959, appointing Sir Leslie Martin as its chair. Menzies appointed Martin to
chair a special committee in 1961 to report to the AUC on the rapidly
increasing demands for higher education in Australia. In August 1963 it released
its second report, which recognised the urgency of Victoria’s situation ‘…the
resources of Melbourne and Monash Universities are not likely to meet the
long-term demands for university education beyond 1966. The Commission
therefore is willing to support in the 1964–1966 triennium the extension of
University facilities in the Melbourne metropolitan area.’ Following the
recommendations the federal government passed the Universities Assistance Bill
in October 1963, providing a grant for a ‘third’ university for recurrent
expenditure in 1965 of $106,000 and $210,000 in 1966. The first capital
grant was for 1966 and amounted to $1,000,000. These grants were to be
matched by equivalent state grants.=Establishment=
The Third University Committee In April 1964, Sir Archibald Glenn was
invited by the Victorian Premier Sir Henry Bolte to chair a ‘Third University
Committee’. In addition to Sir Archibald, thirteen other members were
announced on 21 May 1964. The committee, therefore, consisted of:
Sir Archibald Glenn, OBE, BCE, AMIE Aust. M I Chem.E, AMP, Chairman and
Managing Director, ICI Australia Ltd, Chairman
FH Brookes, MSc, DipEd, Assistant Director of Education, Victoria
Sir John Buchan, CMG, Architect and Chairman, Buchan, Laird & Buchan
Sir Michael Chamberlin, OBE, Deputy Chancellor, Monash University
Sir Thomas Cherry, Sc.D., F.A.A., F.R.S., President, Australian Academy of
Science 1961-65 Mrs Kathleen Fitzpatrick, MA, formerly
Associate Professor of History, University of Melbourne
JA Hepburn, Chief Planner, Melbourne and Metropolitan Board of Works
Mrs Whitney King, CBE, BA, LLB, President of the Free Kindergarten Union
and former President of the National Council of Women
Dr PG Law, CBW, MSc, DAppSc, Director of the Antarctic Division, Department of
External Affairs CE Newman, MC, LLB, Solicitor, Numurkah,
Victoria JD Norgard, BE, General Manager, BHP Co.
Ltd Dr WC Radford, MBE, MA, MEd, PhD,
Director, Australian Council for Educational Research
Professor R Selby Smith, MA, AM, Professor of Education, Monash
University, and Principal of Scotch College, Melbourne, 1953–64
Mr Russel G French, Secretary of the Committee
The terms of reference of the committee were to advise the government on all
matters concerning the establishment of a third Victorian university. This
consisted of ‘the selection of the site, the preparation of a detailed
development program, planning and calling tenders for buildings, the
formulating of an administrative structure, the appointment of an
Academic Planning Board and the recruitment of key staff.’ It was
planned that La Trobe would enrol students, if possible, in March 1967.
Selecting the site The first meeting of the committee
occurred on 2 June 1964 in the rooms of the Historical Society of Victoria on
Victoria Street. From there, they acted promptly in seeking out a suitable
metropolitan location, inspecting 27 sites from a list of 57 possibilities.
The main constraints facing all options were area- ‘adequate for a full and
balanced university’; cost – preferably Crown owned land, as private land would
require large compensation payments; and locality – somewhere reasonably close to
the demographic centre of Melbourne and to public transport.
A subcommittee, headed by Dr Phillip Law, quickly recognised that ‘somewhere
on the eastern side of Melbourne stands out as the right location’, however,
Monash was already growing in the southeastern suburbs, and so an
alternative area was sought. An early list of possibilities read:
‘Outer- Bundoora, Lilydale, Channel O. Inner- Burnley Horticultural College,
Wattle Park, Caulfield racecourse, Kew Mental Asylum’
Selection of an inner site was unlikely, as they were mostly ‘either inadequate
or unattainable, especially the racecourse,’ however, the Kew site was a
real possibility. The ‘ultimate choice’ was unanimously
agreed upon by the end of July, resulting in the farm attached to the
Mont Park Asylum. Dr Cunningham Dax, head of the Mental Health Authority, was
‘most co-operative’, although he raised concerns that the loss of the farm would
be serious for the hospital. An alternative site for the farm was
procured a little further out on Plenty Road, resolving the issue.
Naming the university While it was an interesting
interpretation of a “local name”, La Trobe, proposed by Fitzpatrick, was
agreed unanimously upon by the planning committee after some alternatives, such
as Deakin, were “thoughtfully put aside”. Victorian State
Parliamentarians, however, were far from unanimous when they came to debate the
La Trobe University Bill. Sir Archibald Glenn, chairman of the
committee, provided a concise summary for why La Trobe was chosen:
“Lieutenant-Governor Charles Joseph La Trobe has great historic significance
for Victoria and his name is recognised internationally. La Trobe was not a
university man… but he appears to have had almost every quality, one would
desire in one. He had a lively interest in every aspect of life of the
community, the will to work for the good of other men, and a sense of
responsibility towards prosperity.’ The Victorian Minister for Education,
Sir John Bloomfield, upon presenting the enabling bill to Victorian Parliament,
reflected on the influence of Charles La Trobe in the foundation of the
University of Melbourne over a hundred years before, concluding “my most
satisfying reflection at this moment is that my father’s father sought for gold
in our hills, and he knew this city in the days of the man whom, at the behest
of others, I am now trying to acknowledge. If Providence and this
Parliament will it, my son’s son may be taught in his aura and tradition.”
Although La Trobe, like his father, used “La Trobe” and “Latrobe”
interchangeably, the committee selected the spelling that was predominantly used
by his side of the family.=Early years=
La Trobe University was officially opened by Victorian premier Sir Henry
Bolte on 8 March 1967 in a ceremony that was attended by a number of dignitaries
including the Prime Minister of Australia Robert Menzies. Teaching
commenced at the Bundoora campus in the first semester of that year, with some
500 students. La Trobe was seen to be unique amongst Australian universities
due to its schools-based, collegiate structure. At the time, “this novel
approach became commonly known in the university as ‘The La Trobe Concept'”.
Within 4 years, however, this format had all but broken down, with the collegiate
ideal reduced to halls of residence and the schools becoming departmentalised.
Up until the late 1980s, La Trobe focused almost exclusively on the
liberal arts and science. This was complimented with a strong professional
school when it merged with the Lincoln Institute of Health Sciences in 1988,
which is now the University’s Faculty of Health Sciences offering several
professional health science programs including physiotherapy, podiatry and
occupational therapy. Since then, the University has established other
professional schools, including its Law School in 1992, which was previously a
Legal Studies Department that was established in 1972. In 2008, Victoria’s
second dentistry school was established at La Trobe. However, despite being a
leading Australian university in professional health and biomedical
sciences, La Trobe does not have a medical school. When planned and
developed in the 1960s, there was strong expectation that La Trobe would
eventually establish a medical school and a teaching hospital.
The Bendigo campus of La Trobe dates back to 1873: the Bendigo College of
Advanced Education amalgamated with La Trobe University in 1991, completing a
process that began in the late 1980s as part of the Dawkins reforms to higher
education. During the merger process, a controversial issue erupted when the
university’s head office in Bundoora raised concerns about the academic
standards at Bendigo CAE. This led to a public outcry in which Bendigo CAE
students threatened the Bendigo Advertiser over publishing the matter in
its newspapers. Several newspapers were burned in the protest.
The inclusion of the Wodonga Institute of Tertiary Education took place in the
same year. The university has continued to expand, with the opening of the
Research and Development Park at Bundoora, and the upcoming opening of a
second Melbourne CBD site.=Funding and cutbacks=
Higher education reforms by the Howard government allowed Australian
universities to increase fees and take in a greater number of full-fee paying
students. Despite a large student backlash, La Trobe took advantage of the
reforms, increasing fees by 25% in 2005. Around the same time, the university
suffered cutbacks in government funding, a problem experienced across most of the
Australian higher education sector. La Trobe has lost funding
disproporionately across its departments. For instance, the History
Department at the university was once by far the largest of any institution in
Australia; however, funding restrictions have led to a significant reduction in
its size. Similarly, in 1999, the Music Department was closed due to funding
cuts. The university’s African Research Institute, the only major African
studies centre in Australasia, was closed at the end of 2006. In 2008, the
university cut the Philosophy and Religious Studies Program at the Bendigo
campus, the change resulted in the stream only being taught as a minor.
In 2008, La Trobe was operating with a $1.46 million surplus but has
highlighted that by 2010 it will “review, and where appropriate,
restructure all academic, administrative and committee structures” to deal with
diminished student intakes, falling entrance marks, below-par scores on
student satisfaction surveys and a decreasing proportion of national
research funding. In an attempt to address these issues, the university is
making cut backs and restructuring several courses under the direction of
the Vice-Chancellor, John Dewar. As of 2013, the university is operating on a
28 million dollar surplus Heraldry and brandmark
=Coat of Arms=The key to understanding the heart of
the University’s philosophy is through its armorial bearings, for it provides
many clues into what La Trobe is, and what it is aspires to be.
Crest On the crest sits an Australian
wedge-tailed eagle, perched on a parchment scroll and clasping an
escallop shell. The wedge-tailed eagle, being such a well-known Australian bird
that is found across the continent, was selected to symbolise La Trobe as an
Australian university. One might also note that the wedge-tail is the largest
Australian bird of prey, which may reflect the founder’s early aspirations
of La Trobe being a large and prominent university within Australia.
Motto The motto qui cherche trouve is taken
from the amorial bearings or the La Trobe family – qui la cèrca la tròba. In
Occitan, la tròba means ‘he finds it’, and in regards to the La Trobe family
there is debate over what was the object of the search. Such uncertainty is also
appropriate in the University’s adaption as John S. Gregory, an Emeritus
Professor of La Trobe, aptly phrased it: ‘what one actually finds is rarely
exactly what one seeks or hopes for’. Escutcheon
Upon the escutcheon, there are three main features: the heath, the escallop
shells and the book. The heath refers to the common heath, which is the floral
emblem of the State of Victoria, a highly relevant symbol being Victoria’s
third university. In a sense, it also reflects the University’s attempts to
cater to all Victorians, particularly regional Victorians, which at the time
had felt excluded by the establishment of metropolitan-centred universities.
The blue ribbon serves a decorative purpose in tying both sprigs of heath
together to form a chaplet. The chaplet itself is a seemingly unintended
reference to the State, as it traditionally represented victory.
The three escallop shells upon a fess were taken from the armorial bearings of
the La Trobe family and signify the La Trobe name. What is also important about
the escallops is that they are a sign of a pilgrim and the journey that an
individual must undertake to achieve spiritual, or in the case of the
University, intellectual enlightenment. It is the idea of the journey that is
particularly significant within the University’s arms, as evidenced by the
escallop shell clasped by the eagle in the crest.
The book refers to the book of learning, however, for a university that sought to
implement the Oxbridge traditions of teaching excellence, it is important to
note that the La Trobe book, unlike Oxford, Cambridge, Sydney or Monash,
does not contain clasps, which signifies that the book cannot be opened with
ease. Its absence does not suggest that the La Trobian approach to learning is
any less rigorous, rather, it represents a different approach towards knowledge
that can only be seen in conjunction with the other heraldic symbols. That
is, that learning and the pursuit of enlightenment is attained through the
journey that one undertakes to achieve their desired outcome. Even then, the
outcome at which one has reached, may not have been the outcome initially
sought. Thus, it is the importance placed on the journey of learning, and
what one derives from it, that forms the heart of the University philosophy.
=Brandmark==Initial brandmark=
The University has traditionally incorporated parts of its coat of arms
into its brandmark. The first brandmark was heavily based on its armorial
bearings, following the common university practice of using only the
escutcheon and the motto. Rarely is a university’s full coat of arms used in
such a context. Governance
The principal governing body of the university is the council. The council
is composed of the chancellor, the vice-chancellor, the chair of the
academic board, three persons elected by and from the staff of the university,
two persons elected by and from the enrolled students of the university, six
persons appointed by the governor in council, one person appointed by the
minister administering the act and six other persons appointed by the council.
Under Section 8 of the act that established the university, the council
has the entire direction and superintendence of the university. Some
of the council’s more important responsibilities and functions under the
act include: making Statutes and regulations for or
with respect to all matters concerning the University;
appointing and monitoring the performance of the Vice-Chancellor;
approving the mission and strategic direction of the University;
approving the annual budget and business plan of the University;
overseeing and reviewing the management of the University and its performance;
establishing the policy and procedural principles for the operation of the
University; overseeing and monitoring the assessment
and management risk across the University;
overseeing and monitoring the academic activities of the University;
approving and monitoring systems of control and accountability of the
University, including those required to maintain a general overview of any
entity over which the University has control within the meaning of section 3
of the Audit Act 1994; approving any significant university
commercial activities; conferring and granting degrees,
diplomas and other academic awards to students.
The council is also empowered under section 18 of the act to delegate
powers, authority, duties and functions to any member of the council, or to any
officer or committee of the university.=Vice-chancellor=
The vice-chancellor is the chief executive officer of the university and
is responsible to the council for the discharge of his or her powers,
functions and duties. John Dewar, former Provost of the University of Melbourne
assumed the role Vice-Chancellor of La Trobe University in January 2012. Dewar
is an internationally-known family law specialist and researcher. He is a
graduate of the University of Oxford, where he was also a Fellow of Hertford
College. Dewar was preceded by economic historian Paul Johnson, formerly a
deputy director of the London School of Economics. Before Johnson, Roger Parish
served as interim vice-chancellor for a few months and Brian Stoddart, who took
up the position in December 2005 after previous incumbent, Michael Osborne,
resigned following allegations about extensive overseas travel. Osborne had
been in the position since 1990 and in one of the most controversial events in
the university’s administrative history, his tenure was extended for seven years
in 1994 by the then chancellor, Nancy Millis, without consultation of the
board. The current chancellor is Adrienne
Clarke AC, appointed by the university council on 26 February 2011.
A former Governor of Victoria, Richard McGarvie, was chancellor from 1981 to
1992. Finances
As of 2010, La Trobe was running a budget surplus of $28.5 million. In this
year the University took in $618.1 million in income which came from a
variety of sources, broken down by order of size, the universities income came
from the following: 40% from the Australian government
22% from fees and charges 17% from HECS
11% from other revenue 7% from consultancy and contract
research The university had expenditures of
$516.9 million which can be broken down to the following:
66% to employee benefits 10% to other
8% to professional fees 6% to repairs, refurbishment and
maintenance 5% to depreciation
2% to publications 2% to travel
As of 2010, the university had assets worth $1.22 billion and an endowment of
$267 million. Academia
The university has two colleges, made up of several schools, offering courses at
all levels: College of Arts, Social Sciences and
Commerce: School of Business
School of Education School of Humanities and Social Sciences
School of Law College of Science, Health and
Engineering: School of Allied Health
School of Applied Systems Biology School of Cancer Medicine
School of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences
School of Life Sciences School of Molecular Sciences
School of Nursing and Midwifery School of Psychology and Public Health
School of Rural Health=Admissions and retention=
The university received 12% of VTAC first preferences in 2010 and had a
retention rate of 82%. 81.4% of La Trobe graduates find employment, the national
average being 79.2%. The University, as of 2013, has an EFTSL of 35,073,
consisting of an international student population of 7,737.
Research La Trobe University is a member of the
Innovative Research Network of universities in Australia, a group that
collectively receives over $340 million in research grants.
La Trobe University has been confirmed as one of Australia’s leading research
universities, climbing to third in Victoria, based on the Excellence in
Research Australia 2012 report. La Trobe is the top ranked institution
in the nation for research in Microbiology and equal top with just one
other University in Biochemistry and Cell Biology, and in Veterinary
Sciences. Historical Studies and Archaeology were also both assessed at
the top ranking. The ERA 2012 report shows La Trobe
University has made very significant improvements over the past two years,
with the number of fields of research in specific disciplines rated at world
standard or above rising by 31 per cent, from 29 to 38 in 2012. The increase in
the publications rated at ‘well above’ world standard has increased from about
400 to about 1800, which is more than 300%.
The results are in line with the research investment strategy in research
physical infrastructure such as the LIMS and AgriBio projects, and will inform
further development of research concentration. This will be important to
ensure further improvement in research quality and output in the University in
line with the Strategic Plan=Visualisation laboratory=
The eResearch Office, in conjunction with Associate Professor Paul Pigram,
Head of Physics, and VeRSI announced the completion of a project to establish a
dedicated home for the Virtual Beam Line to the Synchrotron and La Trobe’s first
Visualisation Laboratory. This new space allows for the remote use
of scientific instruments and imaging of scientific data. La Trobe now has the
capability for interactive and immersive research collaboration, visualization of
simulations and deep imaging. The visualisation lab will also act as a
remote training laboratory and classroom for teaching instrument-centric science
and exposing students to the laboratory experience. The combination of
developing a visualisation lab which can also handle the Remote VBL facility is
perfect for integration of various visualisation capabilities in the
Physics arena=La Trobe Institute for Molecular
Science=The La Trobe Institute for Molecular
Science is an interdisciplinary research institute based at the university. It
contains research groups in life sciences, physical sciences, and applied
sciences and teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in these areas through
the School of Molecular Sciences. It also contains two biotech companies:
Hexima and AdAlta. The institute is housed in three buildings: LIMS1 and
LIMS2 in the centre of the university’s main campus in Bundoora, and the Applied
Science building in the Bendigo campus.=Agribiosciences=
The La Trobe AgriBio building, on the south eastern side of the university,
has grown into a structure over four levels with a number of external
buildings under construction such as a large glasshouse and poly-house complex.
Whilst the internal fit-out continues across all quadrants, it is clear that
the majority of the structural work is now complete.
The finished product will be a world-class research environment
including highly functional and flexible spaces, collaborative breakout areas,
open plan office space with abundant natural light, and a huge open foyer
featuring large glass atrium and café. The centre will open its doors to
researchers by the end of 2011, creating a cutting-edge hub for attracting the
world’s leading scientists and collaborators. The first inhabitants
will include 100 researchers and students from La Trobe’s Agriculture and
Botany departments and another 300 from the Department of Primary Industries. A
key objective of AgriBio is to facilitate science collaboration between
La Trobe and DPI, leading to better science outcomes for the benefit of
Victoria and Australia=Archaeology & the Australian
Archaeomagnetism Laboratory=Archaeology at La Trobe University is
taught within the Department of Archaeology, Environment and Community
Planning and was graded at the highest level possible for research in the 2012
Excellence for Research in Australia initiative. La Trobe Archaeology has
major focuses in Australian Indigenous Archaeology, African Archaeology and
Palaeoanthropology, Palaeolithic Archaeology, Middle Eastern Prehistoric
Archaeology, Australian Historical Archaeology, Biomolecular Archaeology,
Geoarchaeology and Archaeological Science. La Trobe Archaeology currently
runs excavations, field schools and conducts research in Australia, Jordan,
South Africa, Kenya, Bulgaria, France, and Cyprus. This includes the Australian
Palaeoanthropological Field School at the Drimolen early hominin site in South
Africa, run jointly with the University of Johannesburg. Archaeology is also
aligned to La Trobe’s research focus area in Transforming Human Societies. In
2011 the University, in conjunction with the Faculty of Humanities and Social
Sciences and Associate Professor Andy Herries, built the Australian
Archaeomagnetism Laboratory, based within the Department of Archaeology,
Environment and Community Planning. The main aim and focus of research in the
laboratory is promoting the use of magnetic methods of analysis for
understanding the age, palaeoenvironmental/climate context and
site formation history of archaeological and fossil sites, as well as
archaeometric archaeometry) analysis of archaeological artefacts for
understanding behavioural information such as material sourcing and the
development of pyrotechnology. The laboratory also undertakes other
research with the Department of Physics, including comparative work at the
Australian Synchrotron. In conjunction with the Geomagnetism Laboratory at the
University of Liverpool TAAL has a major focus on reconstructing palaeosecular
variation from southern hemisphere archaeological sources over the last 5
Ma, with the aim of constructing an Australian Archaeomagnetic Curve. This
currently includes work on the 50 ka long sequence of human occupation at
Lake Mungo in Australia where La Trobe Archaeology directs field excavations
and survey. In 2011 the laboratory was involved in dating the age of the new
South African hominin species Australopithecus sediba, which was
published in the journal “Science”. TAAL’s director, Associate Professor
Herries is currently an Australian Research Council funded Future Fellow in
the Geochronology of Human Evolution and is a recognized world leader in the
magnetic analysis of karst deposits. He been responsible with colleagues for
providing many of the first dates for South African hominin sites. African
Archaeology and Paleoanthropology is a major focus of the TAAL and Archaeology
at La Trobe. Main focuses of research in the laboratory are 1) the role of heat
treatment of stone for the manufacture of stone tools in the archaeological
record; 2) the age of Australian marsupial fossil sites; 3) creating a
chronological framework for the Palaeolithic and human evolution in
Africa and Asia; 4) reconstructing occupation intensity, spatial
patterning, fire use and palaeoclimatic records from archaeological sites. La
Trobe Archaeology in conjunction with the School of Molecular Sciences also
runs a stable isotope facility directed by ARC Future Fellow Dr Colin Smith. The
laboratories main research emphasis is investigating the preservation of
biomolecules in archaeological skeletal tissue and how this affects the
information they contain.=Library collection strengths=
African collection The collection of English language
African materials commenced in the mid 1960s during the university’s
establishment and consists of approximately 25,000 to 30,000 print
titles. The majority of the collections is post-1966 material, focusing on
sub-Saharan history and politics, works of literature by African writers and
scholarly works in the fields on archaeology, anthropology, development,
international relations, economics and sociology. The collection has
particularly strong holdings on South Africa, Angola, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya,
Mozambique, Nigeria, Somalia, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia and
Zimbabwe. European Documentation Centre
The university became a European Documentation Centre in 1975 and has one
of the oldest and largest print collections of this material in
Australia. India and South Asia collection
The collection commenced in 1985, when Greg Bailey and Chris Chartley began
collecting systematically in Sanskrit literature, Hinduism and Buddhism, as
well as ancient Indian history and archaeology. As of 2011, the collection
has amassed 37,500 volumes. The collection is strong in the fields of
humanities and social sciences, particularly the Indian official and
census statistics, and the gazetteers of India as well as a significant number of
resources on 20th century Hindi literature. It also features strong
holdings in early Buddhism and Sanskrit literature pertaining to Hinduism and
belles-lettres. Latin American collection
La Trobe is one of the best research libraries in Australia in the field of
Latin American Studies with approximately 28,000 to 30,000 print
titles in the collection. The focus of the collection is Mexican, Brazilian,
Cuban and Caribbean studies, United States-Latin American relations, and
Latino peoples living in the United States.
Music collection The La Trobe musical collection consists
of 11,000 musical score and sound recordings including: 12th century to
15th Century sacred music; Jazz; Opera; Orchestra; Chamber, Strings and Keyboard
works of all major composers; and Instrument and instrumental ensembles.
Original collections of traditional folk music such as UNESCO recordings are also
held in the collection. Arts and culture
La Trobe began collecting in the early 1960s before construction even started
on the main campus at Bundoora. The collection now consists of more has more
than 3000 post-war contemporary Australian art works valued at $17
million This is the second largest university art collection in Victoria in
terms of collection value Art galleries are located on site at two
of the university campuses: the University Art Museum at Melbourne
campus and the Phyllis Palmer Gallery at Bendigo; the university also operates
the Visual Arts Centre in Bendigo. The Melbourne campus has a sculpture park
which includes the controversial upside-down statue of Victorian colonial
Governor Charles Joseph La Trobe, by sculptor Charles Robb
The La Trobe University Art Collection began in 1966, before construction of
the first buildings commenced at the site of the University’s major campus at
Bundoora. Recognising the importance of an art collection within an educational
environment, the University’s Master Architect, Dr Roy Simpson, AO,
incorporated the installation and display of art works into his overall
vision for La Trobe. Wwith Mr Frank Barnes, the university’s
first Business Manager, and the generosity of individual benefactors, Dr
Simpson initiated the commissioning of paintings by Gareth Jones-Roberts,
Leonard Lloyd Annois and Charles William Bush to establish the Art Collection.
Major sculptural works, such as Allen David’s monumental glass screen that
graces the main entrance to the University Library, were also included
in the original design. The further installation of sculpture in the grounds
and paintings throughout the buildings were proposed in the original Master
Plan, and were made possible with funds raised through the 1976 Retirement
Appeal for the inaugural Vice-Chancellor, Dr David Myers.
Today the La Trobe University Art Collection is considered a major public
art collection, comprising over 2,000 post war and contemporary Australian art
works. The collection covers most media and periods of Australian art. It
includes the largest holding of works by the Australian surrealist Bernard Boles,
expatriate artist Allen David and the Etta Hirsh Ceramics Collection which
consists of over 300 pieces. In addition to an active acquisition
program, art works have been acquired through an artist in residence program
and sponsorship of public art prizes, reinforcing the University’s commitment
to the study, patronage and advancement of the visual arts.
Public accessibility to the collections remains a priority, with many of the
works displayed across the University’s metropolitan and regional campuses,
included in touring exhibitions and exhibitions held at the La Trobe
University Museum of Art and other venues
The other campuses have easy access to local exhibition spaces. The Shepparton
Gallery is located in the Shepparton town centre and was home to our 40th
anniversary travelling art exhibition. Albury-Wodonga students can access
Albury Regional Art Gallery. In Mildura, Visual Arts students present a final
year art exhibition and there is also the Mildura Wentworth Arts Festival
Student life =Student Union=
For more information see La Trobe Student Union
During the 1960s and 1970s, La Trobe and Monash were considered to have the most
politically active student bodies of any university in Australia. The Communist
Party of Australia was a prominent organisation on campus, often with the
cover of a front organisation sometimes encouraging the name ‘La Trot’. The
following La Trobe alumni were all good friends at the time and took part in
student politics: Bill Kelty from the ACTU and Australian Football League
Commissioner, former Treasurer Tony Sheehan, Don Watson, Geoff Walsh, High
profile union officials Brian Boyd, John Cummins and Garry Weaven, former federal
treasury official and former Westpac CEO, David Morgan. Some other Labor
figures and people from the left side of politics include Mary Delahunty, Phil
Cleary and Michael Danby. Despite the general socialist/leftist atmosphere
several conservative corporate/business figures and Liberal Party members have
come from La Trobe. Though the student body at La Trobe is
no longer as politically active as it once was, the trend is similar at all
Australian universities. Nonetheless, Socialist Alternative, and National
Labor Students are still very active, with both the SRC and Union President
typically coming from NLS. La Trobe student organisations were largely run
by NLS over previous years, in coalition with various independent groupings.
The La Trobe University Students’ Union is responsible for the Eagle Bar,
Contact Student Services but its role has been considerably diminished as a
consequence of Voluntary Student Unionism. There used to be three main
student representative bodies on campus known as the La Trobe University Student
Guild, the Student’s Representative Council and the La Trobe Postgraduate
Student’s Association. The La Trobe University Student Representative
Council, became the principal representative body on campus and a
student advocacy group as well as student representatives for welfare,
disability, women, queer, indigenous, environment, education and welfare and
the Guild managed student services. In 2011 however, the Student’s
Representative Council, the La Trobe Postgraduate Students Association, the
Students Guild and the university merged the three separate organisations into
one body: the La Trobe Student Union. The current President of the La Trobe
University Student Union is Rose Steele. The largest faculty-based student
representative organisation on campus is the Law Students Association.
Postgraduate students are represented in the new union. The students at the
Bendigo campus are represented by the Bendigo Student Association, a much less
activist and political organisation than the student union. The BSA publishes the
3rd Degree magazine. 1995 SRC election postal ballot incident
During the 1995 SRC election, there was a major scandal involving postal ballots
sent to Glenn College. A group of four candidates associated with the
Australian Labor Party contested the election as the “Tin Tin for NUS”
ticket. It was discovered that one of the students, Stephen Donnelly, had
gained access to the postal ballots during the delivery process. When
challenged to explain their behavior, all four candidates withdrew their
nominations. The deputy returning officer writes that the candidates
Stephen Donnelly, Robert Larocca, Nigel Rhode and Robin Scott were charged with
Dishonest Conduct and Interfering with Ballot Papers. He escalated the matter
to the Dean of Glenn College and then the University Secretary but found them
disinterested and the matter was never formally prosecuted by the police.
Stephen Donnelly has subsequently become the Assistant State Secretary in the
Victorian branch of the ALP.=Rabelais=
The union also publishes a student magazine, the notorious Rabelais, which
was the subject of a Federal Court case in 1995 after the Office of Film and
Literature Classification ruled that it “…promotes, incites and instructs in
matters of crime” because of an article on shoplifting.
=Colleges and halls of residence=The following colleges and halls are
based at the Melbourne campus: Chisholm College
Glenn College Menzies College
The University lodge Graduate house
=Athletics=La Trobe University is one of 36
universities across Australia that is part of the Elite Athlete Friendly
University Network. The network was established by the Australian Sports
Commission in 2004 to identify, promote and support the specific needs of
university students who participate in sport at an elite level. As a result, an
Elite Athlete Friendly University program was developed and formulated.
In 2011 La Trobe University was the reigning champion at the Southern
University Games, having won the competition in 2010.
The Sports Centre at the Melbourne campus has a fully equipped gym,
squash/racquetball and tennis courts, volleyball, badminton, indoor soccer,
netball and basketball courts, a 25-metre pool with a deep water pit, and
dance and yoga studios. The centre also offers group exercise classes, dance
classes, pilates and yoga. Tuition in most sports can be arranged and courts
can be hired to students at discounted rates. The Centre also offers deep
tissue and trigger point sports massage. La Trobe University participates in the
annual Australian University Games A-League association football club
Melbourne City have their training and administrative facilities based at La
Trobe University. Campuses
=Melbourne=The Bundoora campus is the foundation
campus of La Trobe and was officially opened in 1967 when La Trobe began
operations. The campus is the main base of all La Trobe’s main courses except
education, pharmacy, and dentistry, all of which are based at Bendigo. The main
campus buildings were designed by Melbourne architecture firm, Yuncken
Freeman in a utilitarian, Post-War International style. Main campus
buildings are connected by a series of raised walkways.
Bundoora has around 22,000 students on campus and therefore has many facilities
such as restaurants, bars, shops, banks and an art gallery. The main library on
the campus, the Borchardt, has well over one million volumes.
La Trobe University has three on-campus residential colleges: Menzies, Glenn and
Chisholm. Bundoora also has sporting and
recreation facilities such as an indoor pool, gyms, playing fields, and indoor
stadiums. The facilities are regularly used as a training base for the Essendon
Football Club, and houses the administration & training venue of the
new A-League franchise Melbourne Heart. The Bundoora campus is home to the La
Trobe University Medical Centre and Hospital. The Melbourne Wildlife
Sanctuary, part of the university, is adjacent to the campus.
The university is also home to the Centre for Dialogue, an
interdisciplinary research institution which delves into certain intercultural
and inter-religious conflicts, both in the domestic setting and in
international relations. In March 2009, the centre attracted controversy in
hosting a lecture given by former Iranian President, H. E. Sayed Mohammed
Khatami. Khatami emphasised the importance of dialogue between
civilizations, especially in relation to quelling misunderstandings between the
Islamic world and the West. The Centre for Dialogue has also won acclaim for
its leadership programme for young Muslims, implemented predominantly in
Melbourne’s northern suburbs. La Trobe University Research and
Development Park The R&D Park opened in 1993, adjacent to
the Melbourne Campus. Tenants include a branch of the Walter and Eliza Hall
Institute of Medical Research, the Victorian State Forensic Centre, a Rio
Tinto Group research centre, Victorian Environment Protection Authority, the
Co-operative Research Centre for Vaccine Technology and CAVAL.
In 2005, the Victorian Government announced that $20 million would be
spent developing the Victorian Bioscience Centre and the park.
Latrobe University is the largest university campus in the Southern
Hemisphere. Also on the R&D park is the Technical
Enterprise Centre – a business incubator for new ventures in Information
Technology, biotechnology and the life sciences.
Student radio The La Trobe FM broadcasts from a studio
on campus on the FM frequency. La Trobe FM broadcasts on relay with North West
FM 98.9, 96.5 Inner FM, 3SER, Stereo 974, Yarra Valley FM, 3WBC, 979fm, 3NRG,
FM 876 Network, Golden Days Radio, 88.3 Southern FM, & Eastern FM 98.1.
=Bendigo=La Trobe Bendigo was established in
1991, initially as the La Trobe University College of Northern Victoria.
It succeeded 118 years of tertiary education in the regional centre, which
began with the Bendigo School of Mines in 1873. The main site of the Bendigo
campus, the Edwards Road campus, was established in 1967 under the Bendigo
Institute of Technology. While the Osbourne Street campus was established
in 1959 under the Bendigo Teacher’s College. Together these two sites are
known as the Flora Hill campus precinct. They were acquired by La Trobe
University in 1991 after an amalgamation with the Bendigo College of Advanced
Education. The Bendigo campus is situated on 33
hectares of land, consisting of four sites – Edwards Road, Osbourne Street,
the Visual Art Centre, and the La Trobe Rural Health School. The Edwards Road
campus is positioned three kilometres away from the centre of Bendigo and is
the home of La Trobe’s School of Education. The Heyward Library is also
located there. The Osbourne Street Campus is predominantly used for
examination facilities and is home to the La Trobe University Bendigo
Athletics Track. There is also the associated Central Victorian Innovation
Park, located on university land, which opened in December 2003.
Some of the facilities used in the 2004 Commonwealth Youth Games were located at
La Trobe University Bendigo. Between 1994 and 2005, La Trobe
Bendigo’s curriculum was separate from that based at Bundoora, operated by a
multidisciplinary Faculty of Regional Development. All campuses could choose
to offer individual courses from both Bundoora and Bendigo. This situation
ceased in 2005 after the Bendigo campus formed part of the Melbourne campus
structure.=Melbourne=
La Trobe has two campuses in Melbourne’s central business district, on Collins
and Franklin Streets. The campuses deliver courses in health sciences and
law and management; and houses the Australian Research Centre in Sex,
Health and Society and the Judith Lumley Centre.
=Albury-Wodonga=The Albury Wodonga Campus is located
three kilometres from the centre of Wodonga on a 26 hectare site. It used to
be the sole campus of the Wodonga Institute of TAFE. The La Trobe campus
was established in 1991. The campus continues to share various resources
with the TAFE. The A-W campus houses the faculties of
education, health sciences, biology, business and others.
=Mildura=The Mildura Campus was established in
1996, co-located with the main campus of the Sunraysia Institute of TAFE. These
institutions and other tertiary education and research institutions on
the site share various resources. A second Mildura City campus opened in
2006 in the old Mildura Cultivator offices, next to “Gallery 25”, an art
gallery La Trobe became involved with a few years earlier.
=Shepparton=The Shepparton campus was established in
1994. The new $10m two-storey campus building at 210 Fryers St. was opened in
late 2010.=Bouverie Centre=
The Bouverie Centre was established as a clinical mental health service for
children and adolescents. In 1956, the centre was renamed the Bouverie Clinic
following its relocation from Collins Street, in the CBD of Melbourne to
Bouverie Street, Carlton. The Bouverie Centre made the transition from a child
psychiatric clinic to the first family therapy centre in Australia in the mid
1970s. In 2007 the Bouverie Centre moved into a $5 million, state government
funded, purpose built building at 8 Gardiner Street, Brunswick.
La Trobe University took over the management of the Bouverie Centre] from
the Mental Health Branch of the Victorian Department of Human Services,
and added to Bouverie’s name the subtitle Victoria’s Family Institute. In
the decades that followed, the range of clinical academic courses offered by
Bouverie expanded and to date, the Centre delivers a number of Graduate
Certificate programs, including the Graduate Certificate in Narrative
Therapy; a program specifically tailored for professionals working with people
impacted by Acquired Brain Injury seeking to enhance their skill and
confidence in working with families, and the nationally recognised Graduate
Certificate in Family Therapy for Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander
Workers. The centre’s flagship Master’s level program is a regular feature on
the academic calendar and we also boast a vibrant higher degree research
program. The Bouverie Centre has over 40 staff,
with clinical staff typically working across a number of different service
areas including: Direct clinical services in family
therapy Workforce development; helping services
build family sensitive cultures and deliver family inclusive practice.
Academic award courses Professional development courses
Research, including a PhD program and program evaluation
=Beechworth=The Hotel and Conference Centre at
Beechworth closed on 23 May 2011. This decision followed stakeholder
consultation and feedback about the proposed closure from local businesses
and the community. The Beechworth site was once home to the
Beechworth Lunatic Asylum, founded in 1867 and later renamed “Mayday Hills
Hospital”. The hospital ceased operation in 1995.
=Planned campuses=In 2007, the university announced plans
to open “learning nodes” co-located with the Wangaratta and Seymour campuses of
Goulburn Ovens Institute of TAFE, and at the Swan Hill campus of Sunraysia
Institute of TAFE.=International affiliates=
La Trobe offers a number of courses at several offshore sites. The courses are
mainly in the areas of finance, economics, management, biomedicine,
health and linguistics. These courses are mainly offered throughout Asia in
countries such as China, Japan, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam. Courses
are also offered at a site in France. La Trobe has affiliations with many
other institutions around the world, where La Trobe courses are offered or
exchange programs are offered. The majority of these partners are located
in Europe and Asia. For example, a program with the Royal Institute of
Health Sciences gives Bhutanese qualified nurses the opportunity to
obtain a bachelor’s degree. Rankings
La Trobe’s world rankings have fluctuated over the years, and appears
to be strongest in the arts and humanities, as is demonstrated by The
Times Higher Education World University Rankings. In 2004, La Trobe was ranked
overall 142nd of the world’s top 200 universities, and 13th in Australia. La
Trobe failed to make the top 100 in the world for any area-specific rankings in
2004, but managed to pull in 33rd place in the top 40 universities in the world
outside Europe and North America. Since then, the university lost a lot of
positions in every field and it is now ranked out of the Times Higher Education
World University Ranking at 375th. In 2005, La Trobe University’s world
ranking rose to 98th place, placing it as one of the top 100 universities in
the world, and it moved up to 11th place in Australia. It made a leap to 23rd
place in the world’s top arts and humanities universities, bringing it to
rank 3rd best in Australia. It also reached ranking status in the world’s
top social science universities, coming in 68th in the world and 9th in
Australia. It came in as the 86th best biomedical university in the world, and
moved up to 29th place in the top 50 universities in the world outside Europe
and North America. Research produced by the Melbourne
Institute in 2006 ranked Australian universities across seven main
discipline areas: Arts & Humanities, Business & Economics, Education,
Engineering, Law, Medicine, and Science. For each discipline, La Trobe University
was ranked: La Trobe was one of four non-Group of
Eight universities ranked in the top 100 universities in the world in particular
discipline areas. R1 refers to Australian and overseas
Academics’ rankings in tables 3.1–3.7 of the report.
R2 refers to the Articles and Research rankings in tables 5.1–5.7 of the
report. No. refers to the total number of
institutions in the table against which La trobe University is compared.
People See also
List of universities in Australia Centre for Dialogue
Notes References
External links William J. Breen, ed.. Building La Trobe
University: Reflections on the first 25 years 1964–1989. Melbourne: La Trobe
University Press. ISBN 1-86324-003-9. hdl:1959.9/201688.
La Trobe University – official website La Trobe Students’ Representative
Council La Trobe University Branch – National
Tertiary Education Union