History of

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that the following may contain images and voices of deceased persons.

Schools as we understand them, have existed in Australia for more than 200 years. They began in NSW, expanding across the country as other settlements were made. Government Public School systems did not begin until considerably later than this. These began with primary level schools, then expanded to secondary schools about 1880. The first university [University of Sydney] was established in 1850. Apprenticeships followed by “Mechanics Institutes” began from the 1820s, while colleges [leading to TAFEs] appeared soon after. ‘The year 1889 can be considered to be a significant time-line in the development of technical education, as by this date most of the structures and the frameworks for future development had been established’ 1. Formal early childhood education in the form of preschools [and nurseries] began well after most other sectors, not beginning in a significant way until the 1930s.

Much of the information relating to the history of education in this country is held by state and national archives, rather than by education systems though, interestingly, many individual schools are now becoming more attuned to maintaining their histories than was the case previously.

1. The Development of TAFE in Australia; 2001, Gillian Goozee .

This page covers the history of education in all states & territories, as well as historical information held by national bodies such as the National Museum of Australia, the national Department of Education, Skills and Employment and National Centre for Vocational Education Research [NCVER]. It is designed to cover all areas of education.



  • Facts and Figures
    ‘Browse facts and figures on various aspects of public education in NSW’.
  • Glossary of school types
    ‘The glossary provides definitions of the different school types in operation since 1848’.
  • Government Schools
    ‘This section gives a detailed history of public education in NSW and includes information on the Early History, Introduction of the national system, Public Schools Act 1866, Public Instruction Act 1880, Reform movement in secondary education, and NSW education system since World War II’.
  • Links to Further Information
    Included ‘are a list of organisations that may supply further information about schools, teachers and education in NSW’.
  • Photo Gallery
    ‘Historical photos spanning from 1848 to the late 20th century’.
  • School History Database Search
    Schools in NSW, past and present. The Database Search ‘contains entries for more than 7 390 current and former schools in NSW’.
  • Historical information about NSW Government Schools [1848-2019]
    ‘These datasets contain information about current and former government schools in NSW since 1848. Data notes provide information about the structure of what can be presented. Dataset; Categories; and Activity Stream.
  • NSW Schoolhouse Museum of Public Education
    ‘Provides a glimpse of schooling from the past. The museum is a popular excursion venue for schools. Students participate in a hands-on education program interacting with artefacts and re-enacting early school lessons’. They also have a YouTube channel with a wide range of videos on all sorts of topics from our educational history.
  • Photo Galleries - Schoolhouse Museum
    Links to a range of sources for photos relating to education including their own.
  • School Records Guide
    ‘Overview of education in New South Wales 1788-c.1979 plus a list of the main record series’.
  • School Student Records Guide
    ‘Records provide information relating to Orphan Schools, Industrial Schools and Government schools for admission purposes’. Both Pre-1900 and Post-1900 Records.
  • School Teachers Guide
    ‘Brief overview of sources held by State Records that relate to teacher employment in the Government sector between 1788 and 1979’.
  • Schools - Indexes, Guides, Stories
    State Archives. Indexes : School Teachers’ Rolls, Schools and related Records [neither have been digitised]; Guides : School Records Guide, School Student Records Guide, School Teachers Guide [see above]; Stories : NSW Correspondence School, School Travelling Hospital [photos], History of Education for the Deaf in NSW and Research Listing A-Z.
  • Sydney Boys High School
    ‘Officially opened by Sir George Reid, Minister for Education, on October 8, 1883. Sydney High pioneered the field of Public High School Education in Australia’. Brief historical notes.
  • Sydney Catholic Schools - Our History
    ‘Sydney Catholic Schools have been providing students with a contemporary, world-class Catholic education for 200 years. The development of a system of Catholic Schools in greater Sydney and the emergence of Catholic Education Offices : 1965-1985 by Br Kelvin Canavan is an exploration of the development of our school system’. A copy of the booklet can be downloaded from the site.
  • Sydney Grammar School - History
    ‘Sydney Grammar School is one of the oldest schools in Australia. Its ancestor, the Sydney Public Free Grammar School, opened in 1825 with LH Halloran as Headmaster’.
  • The Female and Male Orphan Schools in New South Wales, 1801-1850
    Digital Thesis [PDF format]. Several sections. Beryl M Bubacz.
  • The King’s School
    Brief history of ‘the oldest independent school in Australia’.

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  • Cairns Diocese - A Brief History of Catholic Education in Far North Qld
    ‘The history of Catholic education in the Cairns Diocese was characterised by the exceptional personal commitment and perseverance by the many religious and lay women and men who moved to a tropical climate to open Catholic schools’. Timeline provided.
  • Catholic Schools Queensland - Our History
    ‘This timeline shows the foundation date of all Queensland Catholic schools currently in operation. Some schools on the timeline are amalgamations of much older schools but appear on the timeline when they came into existence in their current form. Many other Catholic schools have opened and then closed within the last 175 years as population centres have shifted with the changing times’.
  • Distance Education in Queensland
    Brief history with tabulated information starting in 1901 with a single itinerant teacher.
  • Education History Queensland
    ‘The collection includes reference materials, syllabus, textbooks, exercise books and copybooks previously used in Queensland schools. Members of the public are invited to contact Queensland State Archives and State Library of Queensland for support’. Sections include :

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  • Adelaide Miethke and the School of the Air
    ‘Adelaide Miethke (1881-1962) was a South Australian educator and teacher who was pivotal in the formation of the School of the Air using the existing Royal Flying Doctor Service Radio network’. Newspaper extract, links to related information.
  • New ! A History of Early Childhood Education in South Australia
    ‘Early childhood in South Australia, including times prior to the establishment of the colony, has a remarkable history. Now seems an appropriate time to create an overview of this history so that the public and those who currently work in the sector, or who are entering the early childhood profession, become aware of that history and the work of those in whose footsteps they follow’.
  • New ! A History of Primary Education in South Australia Collection
    ‘The Collection has over 8000 items used to teach in South Australian Primary Schools throughout the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. The core of the Collection consists of textbooks, readers, audiovisual, kit resources and curriculum documents along with a small sample of teachers’ lesson plans, school roll books and students’ copy books. Non-fiction material published in or about South Australia and developed for primary education and with educational research significance also forms part of the Collection’.
  • Government Records and the Family Historian - School records
    LibGuides at State Library of South Australia. Introduction provides extensive assistance to find information.
  • New ! The HOPE Collection
    ‘The Collection includes over 8 000 items that were used to teach in South Australian Primary Schools. Material includes textbooks, readers, audiovisual and kit material along with curriculum documents published and used through the 19th, 20th and 21st centuries. Non-fiction material published in or about South Australia and developed for primary education and with educational research significance, is included in the collection. The collection also includes a small sample of teachers’ lesson plans, school roll books and students’copy books’. Only accessible at the University of South Australia Library.
  • Lutheran Schooling during WW1
    Article recording attitudes toward this.
  • School Admission Registers 1873-1985
    Records plus links to other sources.
  • South Australian History - Education
    LibGuides at State Library of South Australia. Includes links to ‘Books and pamphlets; School histories and records; Electronic resources; Other resources; Newspaper searching’.
  • SA Memory - Learning and Education
    ‘Beginnings, Growth of grammar schools, The poor, The wealthy, In South Australia; Kindergartens, High Schools, Private education, Private schools, Distance education and Further reading’.
  • Schools - State Records of South Australia
    ‘We hold many public school admission registers, which document children’s school admission and attendance from the 1870s to the 1990s. We also hold limited examination results from the Public Examinations Board from the 1890s to the 1960s. You can search by pupil name within the collection : Australia, South Australia, School Admission Registers, 1873-1985’.
  • The Education Question
    Information about the need for teachers in the 1850s.
  • The Manning Index
    The Index at the State Library of South Australia. This is the Education section. Information from Arbor Day to Truancy.


  • 150 Years of Public Education in Tasmania
    ‘Libraries Tasmania has an extensive collection of historical material about schools and their history. These collections include historical films, photographs, school building plans, admission registers, teacher applications, inspector’s reports, yearbooks and published school histories. This website gives easy access to these collections’.
  • 150 Years of Public Education - The Department of Education Tasmania
    ‘Tasmanian public education celebrates a significant milestone in 2018. This year marks 150 years of providing children across the state with the best start in life. In 1868 the colony of Tasmania became the first in Australia to make attendance for children between the ages of seven and 12 compulsory. Five years later the upper age limit was increased to 14 years’. Also has links to further information.
  • Education Board
    The Education Board during the period 1838 to the end of 1853. Includes the Secretary’s Letterbooks; Draft Reports by the Inspector of Schools and associated papers; and Reports and Proposals relating to an Education System.
  • Education Department Archives Office
    Extensive records covering areas including Admission Registers, Student Record Cards, Examination Results, Records of Staff Meetings, Visitors Books, Inspection Reports and many more.
  • Photos and plans
    ‘Finding photos and building plans for your school. To see if we have any photos or building plans for your school, click on the links [below] and then type in your school name. Not all photographs and plans are online. These records can be viewed and sometimes copied at our Reading Room at 91 Murray Street Hobart’.
  • Schools and Education Records
    ‘School and education records including Admission registers, Inspectors reports, Teacher applications, Other education records’. An example is available at this Libraries Tasmania site.
  • The Companion to Tasmanian History - Education
    University of Tasmania.

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  • Access school student records
    ‘You can access your school record, which includes details of your enrolment in a school. In most cases you should contact the school directly. Search to see if the school is still open and find their contact information’. Information/requirements also on how to : Access another person’s record; Non government schools; Getting advice; and Background information
  • A History Of State Education in Victoria
    Victorian Department of Education and Training. First published 1922. Read online or download. You can also access copies here and here. Multiple formats available from all sites [e.g. PDF, ePub, Kindle, Text, Daisy].
  • Education Act 1872
    ‘This law set up in Victoria the basis for a uniquely centralised model of school education, unlike those in Britain, the United States or Canada. Victoria was the first of the Australian colonies to set up a central public school system based on the principles of free, secular and compulsory education’. Transcript available in PDF format or RTF format, view online.


  • Free education introduced [Defining Moments]
    ‘1872 : Free, compulsory and secular education introduced in Victoria’. National Museum of Australia.
  • Public Record Office - Education
    ‘There are many records in our collection that relate to government schools. You will find records that track the establishment and maintenance of schools, provide details on students and teachers, and much more including plans of school sites and buildings. Apprenticeship records; Government school and pupil records; Government school building and property records; Non-government school teacher records; Non-government school records; School Photographs [1890-1993]; School records [1839-1873]; School records after 1873; and Related topics’.
  • Researching Australian Education
    ‘This guide provides an overview of sources relevant to the history of education in Victoria and Australia’.
  • School and education history in Victoria
    ‘State Library Victoria holds many resources including books, periodicals, images, maps, online databases and indexes which may help you with your research. We also refer you to other organisations that hold relevant records’.
  • Victorian Aboriginal Education Association
    ‘The Victorian Aboriginal Education Association was first established in 1976 as the Victorian Aboriginal Education Consultative Group [VAECG]. Today VAEAI represents the Koorie Community in relation to education policy development and strategic programming at the local, state and national levels’.


  • An Education in History
    ‘The early days of the Swan River Colony were very hard for the 850 settlers, who spent most of their time coming to terms with the very hostile climate of Western Australia. As a result the problem of educating the colony’s children took second place to survival’. Early days in education.
  • Bibliography of The History of Education in Western Australia
    National Library of Australia. Book.
  • Catholic Archdiocese of Perth - History
    Includes educational history woven within the story of the Archdiocese.
  • Catholic Education Western Australia - History
    ‘From its humble beginnings in 1843, when the first Catholic school opened in Perth, Catholic education in Western Australia has been responding to the needs of communities, providing a Catholic education for all families who seek it’.
  • Education and School Records
    ‘The State Records Office holds historical records that have been transferred from the Education Department of Western Australia [as well as predecessor and related agencies] and from individual government schools. Education Department; School Records; District School Boards; Tertiary Education Institutions; Other Education Related Records; and Further Information’. Links also to holdings in the Battye Library.
  • Education in Western Australia - History
    Section of a larger Wikipedia document.
  • Northcliffe School History Project
    The Year 8 Class of 2004 ‘researched old school records and conducted interviews. This project was conducted in conjunction with the 80th Anniversary of the Northcliffe community. Covered : Oral History – Interview; Timeline; Settlement Schools; Current School Site; Map; Classrooms; Games and Playgrounds. We present the project to you in its entirety’.
  • SIDE History
    ‘Established in September 1918 to serve the needs of ‘isolated’ and ‘outback’ children in the primary years, the School of Isolated and Distance Education has a varied history. It has evolved into an online K-12 school based in Leederville, a suburb of Perth. It continues to provide an education to Western Australian children and young people who are living in isolated, regional or remote situations’.
  • WA Deaf Education History
    West Australian Foundation for Deaf Children. ‘In 1896, the West Australian Foundation for Deaf Children was formed and since then has played an invaluable role helping deaf children and their families, working tirelessly to ensure they receive the education, support and information they need’ Links to the WA Deaf Education History Group which ‘is currently working on preserving documents, photographs, and items related to the history of Deaf Education in Western Australia from 1896 to 2019’.

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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that the following may contain images and voices of deceased persons.


  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Education
    An Introduction for the Teaching Profession. Chapter Abstracts for the whole text. Foreword, Contents and Contributor information is available for download here [PDF]. Chapters may be available from other sources such as university libraries.
  • Aboriginal Education Consultative Group [NSW]- History
    ‘The NSW Aboriginal Education Consultative Group [AECG] began in 1977 as a committee of Aboriginal people invited by the Department of Education to advise it on Aboriginal Education’.
  • Aboriginal Timeline : Education
    Creative Spirits. Multiple filters available for viewing a timeline which runs from 1814 to 2020.
  • An Historical Overview of Aboriginal Education Policies in the Australian Context
    A chapter from the book “Indigenous Education : A learning journey for teachers, schools and communities” Available in PDF format from this page. A Preview of the chapter is available from this page.
  • A NSW Aboriginal Education Timeline 1788–2007
    Dr Allison Cadzow for the Board of Studies NSW. ‘This timeline briefly outlines some turning points and events in NSW institutional Aboriginal education from 1788 to 2007’.
  • Barriers to Aboriginal education
    Creative Spirits. ‘Barriers include inappropriate teaching materials and a lack of Aboriginal role models. Aboriginal education requires connection to communities and informed parents.You can distinguish barriers to Aboriginal students’ education by several categories’ which are detailed.
  • Closing the Gap
    Multiple sections form this process, one of which is education. Education targets are found on the Targets page. Expand each educational target for Outcome, Target and Data. History of Closing the Gap is found on this page.
  • Educating Aboriginal Children – Issues, Policy and History
    ‘This chapter provides a snapshot of the issues that have shaped the educational experiences of Western Australian Aboriginal children over time. It describes the school education system, and the relative disadvantage of Aboriginal students within that system, in terms of participation, retention and attainment’. Part of a larger review.
  • Education for Assimilation : A Brief History of Aboriginal Education in Western Australia
    Abstract and References are provided. Access may be available from multiple other sources such as university libraries. Many references provide Google Scholar links to copies of these documents.
  • History of Indigenous Education
    ‘This book presents a history of Indigenous Education in Australia. It outlines the relevant government policies and key events over the last 230 years which have influenced the state of education today for Indigenous youth’.
  • Mapping Indigenous Education Participation
    A Discussion Paper - N Biddle, B H Hunter, and R G.Schwab; 2004. ‘This paper illustrates that the most important factors explaining rates of educational participation of young Indigenous adults in order of importance’ [at the time written].
  • Policies and Practices in Indigenous Education - Annotated Timeline
    ‘This timeline will specifically examine the historical and contemporary perspectives on Indigenous Education’. Click on menu items on the left for details of each.
  • The Australian Journal of Indigenous Education
    The journal ‘publishes papers and reports on the theory, method, and practice of Indigenous education. While AJIE has a particular focus on Indigenous education in Australia and Oceania, research which explores educational contexts and experiences around the globe are welcome’. As with other documents, it provides article details, abstract and references. Many of the referenced materials are available through Google Scholar. The journal may be available through other sources such as university and other libraries.

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  • History of Higher Education in Australia | K12 Academics
    ‘To World War II, World War II to 1972, After 1972, 1980s, 1990s and 2000s’.
  • Oldest Universities in Australia [by Foundation Year]
    ‘Our aim is to highlight which Australian Universities have the longest history and tradition and how this correlates to their uniRank University Ranking’.
  • Tertiary Education in Australia
    Wikipedia. This is the History section of a multi-section presentation covering information about Australian universities.
  • The Changing Structure of Higher Education in Australia, 1949-2003
    Malcolm Abbott and Chris Doucouliagos. ‘In the late 1940s Australia’s universities were modest institutions consisting of a single university in each state capital along with the newly established, research orientated, Australian National University in Canberra. As well, two university colleges were located in Canberra and Armidale in New South Wales. The number of university students enrolled in Australian universities in 1949 at 31 753 was tiny compared to the numbers enrolled in higher education at the beginning of the twenty-first century, 828 871 in 2003 [Official yearbook of the Commonwealth of Australia ; Students … selected higher education statistics 2001]. The scale of the universities has changed over this period as well’.


  • Australian Catholic University - History
    ‘Australian Catholic University [ACU] was opened on 1 January 1991 following the amalgamation of four Catholic tertiary institutions in eastern Australia. These institutions had their origins in the mid-1800s, when religious
  • Australian National University - Our History
    Lists major points, Chancellors, Vice-Chancellors, more. A second page covers history, Post-War Origins and multiple other sections including external links. Also see Canberra University College 1930-1960 with a second page covering the College structure. This was a precursor to ANU.
  • New ! Avondale University
    Our latest university [2021]. The following page - New !Avondale University [Wikipedia] provides an extensive history of the new university including background and transition to university status.
  • Bond University History
    ‘Bond University [provided a] vision for Australia’s first private, not-for-profit university. Take a scroll through memory lane’ provides information in addition to the initial overview.
  • New ! Carnegie Mellon University [Aust.]
    This link connects to the Australian arm of the New !New !Carnegie Mellon University in the United States. The Australian arm began in 2006 in South Australia.
  • CQUniversity - University History
    ‘The University was originally founded in Rockhampton in 1967 and was known as the Queensland Institute of Technology [Capricornia]. Now more than 20 years on, and following a merger with CQ TAFE on 1 July 2014, CQUniversity is responsible for providing a diverse range of training and education programs and courses to more than 30,000 students studying qualifications from certificate to post doctorate level’.
  • Charles Darwin University Anniversary
    ‘Most information can be found through the Oral Histories section’.
  • Charles Sturt University - Our history
    ‘Whilst we’ve been a university for more than 20 years, our history of professional education and research spans more than 100 years. This started with the establishment of the Bathurst Experimental Farm in 1895. Timeline; Campus Histories; Emblems and Colours; Ceremonial Symbols; Office Holders; Portraits and Paintings; Charles Napier Sturt’.
  • Curtin University - History, historical timeline, when it was established
    ‘In 1987 Curtin University of Technology became Western Australia’s third university and Australia’s first university of technology. History and Facts inform about the key organisational milestones in our subsequent journey to becoming the state’s largest and most multicultural university.
  • Deakin University - History
    ‘From being the first Australian university to specialise in distance education to becoming the university with Victoria’s most satisfied students eight years running, Deakin has a long and illustrious history. Our history at a glance [time spans]’.
  • Edith Cowan University - History
    ‘Edith Cowan University [ECU] is an Australian public university located in Perth, Western Australia. It was named after the first woman to be elected to an Australian Parliament, Edith Cowan, and is the only Australian university named after a woman’. This is the history section of the page.
  • Federation University - Our History
    ‘Federation University Australia was formed when the former University of Ballarat and the Gippsland Campus of Monash University were amalgamated. Further historical information on the University is available through the Geoffrey Blainey Research Centre. The University's history dating back to 1870 has been documented and is available for viewing’.
  • Flinders University - History
    ‘Our story is rich with milestones and highlights. View our interactive timeline’. Other information as well.
  • Griffith University - History, Archive
    Use the links at the top of the page to gather further information, e.g. Search, Campuses, Exhibitions.
  • James Cook University - History
    ‘JCU is Queensland’s second oldest university. We offered our first courses in Townsville in 1961 as an annex of the University of Queensland. Since then we have become a dynamic, multi-campus university with a total of 17 500 students’.
  • La Trobe University - Our history
    ‘La Trobe has been one of Australia’s pioneering universities for more than 50 years. Discover our unique history, including our motto and coat of arms’.
  • Macquarie University - History
    Wikipedia. Covers from establishment in the 1960s through to the current period.
  • Monash University - A proud history
    ‘Early years; Growth; International Expansion; Our living history timeline’, more.
  • Murdoch University - Our History
    ‘We pioneered access to a university education for people from diverse backgrounds, and are proud to see our students take their Murdoch education to the world to solve its challenges’.
  • Queensland University of Technology - History
    Wikipedia. ‘Queensland University of Technology [QUT] has a history that dates to 1849 when the Brisbane School of Arts was established. Queensland Institute of Technology [QIT)]succeeded the Central Technical College and was formed in 1965. The current QUT was established as a university in 1989’.
  • RMIT University - History
    Wikipedia. A second page provides a A Timeline of RMIT History with summaries for listed years from 1887 to 2015.
  • Southern Cross University History
    ‘This site has been developed to showcase stories, historical information and personal recollections of the University’s development. It includes a condensed Brief History of SCU from Teachers College (pre-1994) to University’.
  • Swinburne University of Technology - Our History
    ‘The Swinburne History Collection contains more than 8000 items that provide insights into the people, places and events that are significant to Swinburne University. This includes photographs, videos, audio, speeches, maps and building plans’.
  • The University of Adelaide - History
    ‘The University of Adelaide was founded in 1874 with a noble goal: to prepare, for South Australia, young leaders shaped by education, rather than birth or wealth, in a settlement free of old-world social and religious inequalities. Making history; A progressive institution of many ‘firsts’; A reputation for excellence; The University of Adelaide Archives’.
  • The University of Melbourne
    ‘Founded in 1853 by an Act of the Victorian Parliament, the University of Melbourne is a thriving internationally acknowledged research University. Website References include The History and Records of the University of Melbourne, University of Melbourne Archives, Updated !Image Collection’ and links re books about the history of the university.
  • University of New South Wales - History
    ‘The University was incorporated by Act of the Parliament of New South Wales in Sydney in 1949, but its character and idea can be traced back to the formation of the Sydney Mechanics Institute in 1843, leading to the formation of the Sydney Technical College in 1878’.
  • University of Newcastle - Living Histories
    Slideshow showing important points along the way. There is a similar presentation for Chancellors and Vice-Chancellors Timeline.
  • The University of Notre Dame Australia
    ‘Here are the [4] chapters of the incredible story of The University of Notre Dame Australia, as documented by Edward Molloy [President Emeritus University of Notre Dame Indiana] and Peter Tannock [Vice Chancellor Emeritus The University of Notre Dame Australia]’.
  • The University of Queensland - History of UQ
    ‘Established through a 1909 Act of State Parliament, The University of Queensland was the first university in the state and was officially founded on April 16, 1910, with the gazettal of appointments to the first UQ Senate. Teaching started in 1911 in Old Government House in George Street, Brisbane’.
  • The University of Sydney - Our Story
    ‘A History of thinking forward; Famous faces and quiet achievers; Milestones : from inauguration to present day; Prizes and honour roll;’ and more.
  • The University of Western Australia - History of the University
    ‘The University of Western Australia (UWA) was established in 1911 as the State's first university. It was also the first free university in the British Empire, actively promoting equal access to tertiary education for all social classes. Centenary celebrations; Former officers of the University; Holders of honorary degrees; Recipients of the Chancellor’s Medal; Hackett Students; Archives collection’.
  • Torrens University - Our University
    ‘Torrens University Australia was recognised by an act of the South Australian parliament in 2013, making it the 40th university in Australia and the first new university for 20 years. Torrens University is a private university and is part of US-based Strategic Education’.
  • University of Canberra - History
    ‘This site is a collection of materials that are a part of the history of the campus. Available on the site are past articles and materials on the University’s history’.
  • New ! University of Divinity
    ‘The University of Divinity delivers education and research in theology, philosophy and spirituality and for over one hundred years has prepared its graduates for ministry, leadership and community service’.
  • University of New England [UNE] - Origins
    ‘The vision of those who fought to establish Australia’s first regional university at Armidale in northern NSW came to fruition after years of work and development through numerous stages’.
  • University of South Australia - History
    Wikipedia. A brief section of a larger information package about the university.
  • University of Southern Queensland - Our History
    ‘The USQ Historical Archives play an important role in preserving the history and memory of the University. Members of the public are welcome to view the various exhibitions and displays available’ Also check the University Timeline.
  • University of Tasmania - 125 Years - Explore the Decades
    ‘Founded in 1890, the University of Tasmania has a rich and proud history. In 2015 we are celebrating 125 years of education and research. We invite you to explore the key milestones, stories and personalities of our history in our 125 Years Timeline’.
  • University of Technology Sydney
    Wikipedia. ‘The University of Technology Sydney originates from the Sydney Mechanics’ School of Arts [the oldest continuously running Mechanics’ Institute in Australia], which was established in 1833’.
  • New ! University of the Sunshine Coast
    ‘Planning began for the Sunshine Coast University College in 1994. The University opened in 1996, becoming the first greenfield university to open in Australia since 1971’.
  • University of Wollongong - History
    ‘The University of Wollongong traces its origins to 1951 when a Division of the then New South Wales University of Technology was established in Wollongong. Originally established as a provider of technical education for engineers and metallurgists required for the region’s steel industry, the University now offers a wide range of courses across four faculties’.
  • Victoria University - Our History
    ‘Historical context; The Centenary Campaign; The University of Opportunity & Success’. View Victoria University’s history in the Library.
  • Western Sydney University - University History
    ‘The University of Western Sydney [UWS] began operation on 1st January 1989, under the terms of the University of Western Sydney Act, 1988. However, the predecessors of the University date back as far as 1891 with the establishment of the Hawkesbury Agricultural College. The Act created a federated network university, based on two existing Colleges of Advanced Education - Hawkesbury Agricultural College and Nepean College of Advanced Education’.

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  • A history of technical education in Australia : with special reference to the period before 1914
    A PhD thesis from the University of Melbourne. Use the download link on the left hand side of the page. [Size - 58mb].
  • History through the Decades
    ‘The history of the vocational education and training sector in the Northern Territory, including the NT Training Awards, has been collated and written by Dr Don Zoellner, Research Associate at the Northern Institute, Charles Darwin University’. You can also find a Timeline of Events ‘that have shaped the Northern Territory [NT] vocational education and training [VET] sector from 1948 to 2015’.
  • Our History - TAFE NSW
    ‘The story of TAFE NSW has been shaped by many impactful events throughout Australia’s history. At each momentous point in time, we have responded by matching the shifting demands of the workforce and the economy’.



  • VET Knowledge Bank [VOCEDplus]
    ‘The site contains a suite of products capturing Australia’ s diverse, complex and ever-changing vocational education and training [VET] system. It aims to provide a collected memory of VET reference information. The Knowledge Bank is a living, growing resource’. Among its contents are :
  • A History Search List
    More than 400 documents covering every aspect of the history of vocational education and TAFEs in Australia.
  • History of VET
    ‘The aim of this product is to provide easy access to information that tells the story of VET in Australia. This page provides links to key documents and timelines’.
  • History of VET in Australia
    ‘This webpage [archived in November 2012] provided an overview of the history of vocational education and training in Australia. It contained links to a range of documents and timelines’.
  • History of VET - Milestones in the history of VET
    ‘This timeline highlights key events in the history of VET in Australia, starting with the 1952 Commonwealth-State Apprenticeship Inquiry which was the first national review of apprenticeships’. Also has links to related timelines.
  • Landmark Documents
    ‘The term “landmark”, as used for this collection, refers to documents considered by history and authoritative commentary to have influenced the development of the system, providing vision and/or leading to significant reforms or widespread cultural/attitudinal change’.
  • Timeline of Australian VET Policy Initiatives 1998-2019
    ‘This timeline shows national, state and territory programs and policy initiatives over the past 22 years that may have influenced enrolments and completions of VET courses, apprenticeships and traineeships. It also includes economic events that may have impacted the education and training system and/or influenced its policy landscape’.

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  • A History of State Aid to Non-government Schools in Australia
    ‘A history of funding to non-government schools in Australia since colonial times and its evolution since World War II’. 2007 publication available in PDF format [1.3mb, 320 pages]. Pandora Archive.
  • Australian National Museum of Education
    ‘Comprises an on-site repository at the University of Canberra and a distributed collection which aims to bring together in a virtual way, archival material held in by a national network of school museums registered as members’.
  • Catholic Education in Australia
    Wikipedia. This page opens to the History section related to Catholic education.
  • Deaf Children Australia - History
    ‘Deaf Children Australia was established in 1862 in response to the needs of a deaf child and her family. It was then known as the Victorian Deaf and Dumb Institute. Our Bluestone Building was built in 1866 and has been the home of Deaf Education and support for deaf children and youth ever since. Learn of key historical events on Our Timeline of Events from 1852. We recommend you use the latest version of Firefox or Chrome to view the timeline’ to get the best results.
  • Dictionary of Educational History in Australia and New Zealand
    ‘Aims to provide a range of authoritative entries about the multifaceted history of education in Australia and New Zealand, including histories of various types of schools and schooling; teachers and teacher training; curricula and pedagogies; childhood and youth; educational purposes and policies; and educational philosophies’. All sections available as PDFs. Outstanding ! Examples of information included cover :
  • Doris Chadwick Collection
    “History of School Education in Australasia”. 1890s to the 1960s. Scroll down to link D233. Most can only be accessed at the University of Wollongong. Some material available in PDF format.
  • History of Music Education in Australia
    Compiled by Robin Stevens. ‘This website is designed to provide basic information about the historical development of music education in Australia. Aside from the overview provided below. there are links to other pages which provide a listing of bibliographic sources for the history of music education in Australia and a gallery of portraits and biographical details for a number of prominent Australian music educators’.
  • History of Nursing and Nursing Education Archive
    ‘The focus of the archive is on documents and records related to the history of nursing and nurse education in Australia, including the bush nursing and army nursing in World War I and World War II’. Other material includes other countries [New Zealand, North America and United Kingdom].
  • Schools in Australia : 1973-1998
    “The 25 Years Since The Karmel Report [Conference Proceedings]”. Download from here.
  • Updated ! Student Data [Dept. of Education]
    ‘The Higher Education student data collection encompasses enrolments, equivalent full-time student load [unit of study data] and completions, and includes all Higher Education Institutions that have been approved under the Higher Education Support Act 2003’ Covers the period since 2004.

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  • Our history : AEU ACT
    The AEU ACT History Project. Articles, Photos, Documents’.
  • History - AEU NT
    ‘Explore a brief snapshot of some key issues in the development and history of our union over the past 40 years’.
  • History - AEU Victorian Branch
    Timeline showing major events and achievements.
  • National Tertiary Education Union
    ‘NTEU was formed in 1993 by the amalgamation of five tertiary education unions. These organisations all saw benefits in forming a single, stronger union for the whole tertiary education industry’.
  • National Union of Students [Australia]
    Wikipedia. Scroll down to the History section. The home page of the union is found at this link.
  • NSW Teachers Federation - History
    ‘Throughout its history, Federation has campaigned long and hard on issues affecting public education, teachers’ salaries and teachers’ working conditions, those issues which are at the heart of teaching as a profession in New South Wales’.
  • Queensland Teachers Union - History 1889 to 2019
    ‘On 9 January, 1889, 23 teachers and principals from schools across the colony of Queensland met in Brisbane to found the first teachers’ union on this continent. QTU Milestones’ are detailed.
  • The Independent Education Union of Australia [IEUA]
    ‘The IEU has a long and rich history. It is the history of teachers working and acting together to ensure that their contribution to the provision of high quality education for their students is understood and valued by the community’.

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