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Charles Sturt University
Former name
MottoFor the public good[3]
TypePublic research university
  • 1892 (established)[1]
  • 1951 (tertiary college)[1]
  • 1989 (university status)[1]
Academic affiliations
EndowmentA$1.21 billion (2022)[4]
BudgetA$503.58 million (2022)[4]
ChancellorDr Michele Allan[5]
Vice-ChancellorProf Renée Leon PSM[6]
Academic staff
750 (FTE, 2022)[7]
Administrative staff
1182 (FTE, 2022)[7]
Total staff
2,117 regular (2022)[4]
438 casual (2022)[4]
Students36,762 (2022)[8]
Undergraduates24,342 (2022)[8]
Postgraduates9,835 (2022)[8]
Other students
2,585 (2022)[8]
CampusUrban and regional with multiple sites[9]
Named afterCharles Napier Sturt[10]
Sporting affiliations
MascotCharlie the Cockatoo[12]

Charles Sturt University is an Australian multi-campus public university located in New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory and Victoria. Established in 1989, it was named in honour of Captain Charles Napier Sturt,[13] a British explorer who made expeditions into regional New South Wales and South Australia.

Charles Sturt offers undergraduate, postgraduate, and higher degrees by research and single-subject study. It also has course delivery partnerships with several TAFE institutions across Australia, including with the New South Wales Police Force.[14]


The history of Charles Sturt University dates to 1895, with the establishment of the Bathurst Experiment Farm. The university was established on 1 July 1989 from the merger of several existing separately-administered Colleges of Advanced Education by The Charles Sturt University Act 1989 (Act No. 76, 1989).[15]

The constituent colleges included the Mitchell College of Advanced Education in Bathurst, the Riverina-Murray Institute of Higher Education in Albury–Wodonga and the Riverina College of Advanced Education in Wagga Wagga.[16]

On 1 January 1970, the Mitchell College of Advanced Education was formed. The Riverina Murray Institute of Education campus in Wagga Wagga and Albury-Wodonga had operated since 1984.[17][18] The latter institution had earlier succeeded the Riverina College of Advanced Education, which was itself the result of an even earlier merger between Wagga Agricultural College and the Wagga Wagga Teachers College.[18]

Charles Sturt established a Study Centre in Sydney[19] in 1998 and in Melbourne[20] in 2007. These study centres were operated by a private education group called Study Group Australia.[21] On 31 December 2022, Charles Sturt let its relationship with Study Group Australia expire. According to Charles Sturt's website, the Brisbane Study Centre is closed, and courses at the Sydney and Melbourne locations are in teach-out mode.[22]

The Goulburn campus was established to deliver policing education to New South Wales Police.[14]

In 1999, the Dubbo campus foundation stone was laid. The university also launched its China Joint Cooperation Program with four universities in China.

On 1 January 2005, Charles Sturt formalised moves to assume control of the University of Sydney's Orange campus, which came into force on 1 January 2005.[23] Between 2005 and 2015, the university had expanded to include an offshore campus in Burlington, Ontario, in Canada.[24][25] On July 2015, Charles Sturt ceased to operate its Ontario campus due to the legislative and regulatory environment in Ontario.[26]

In 2005, Charles Sturt responded to the shortage of veterinarians in rural and regional Australia with the first vet science students starting their degrees at the Wagga Wagga campus. And in 2008, the university also offered dentistry courses for the first time. This led to the development of five community-based clinics across its regional campuses.

On 14 February 2011, Charles Sturt University changed its logo. The Sturt's desert pea flower (Swainsona formosa) was stylised and made prominent, with the full name of the university as part of its logo.[27][28]

On 1 May 2012, a milestone was reached as the university opened a new campus in Port Macquarie, its first coastal regional campus, making higher education accessible to the Port Macquarie and the Hastings region.[29]

In 2013, the university implemented a gas engine cogeneration power plant to help minimise fuel costs and carbon emissions.[30]

On 18 April 2016, staff and students at the Port Macquarie campus moved into stage one of their purpose-built campus. The second stage was completed in 2020 and included an NSW emergency services training room, innovation hub and student support facilities. The third stage is scheduled for completion over the coming years, with an expected student intake of 5000 by 2030.[citation needed]

On 28 July 2016, Charles Sturt has declared Australia's First Official Carbon Neutral University.[31] The Government of Australia's Carbon Neutral Program certified the university as "carbon neutral" against the National Carbon Offset Standard.

On 9 May 2018, Charles Sturt and Western Sydney University announced a partnership with the Australian Government's network to establish the Murray-Darling Medical School, providing Joint Medical Programs across the Murray-Darling Basin Region.[32] Charles Sturt's teaching base was established at the university's Orange campus to extend on the existing Western Sydney University program.[33]

In May 2019, for its 30th anniversary, the university announced its new brand and visual identity. This included a new crest that drew on the original coat of arms and the logos of its predecessor institutions. The crest's design includes patterns that draw on the culture and symbolism of First Nations Australians and echo the landscapes of regional NSW.[citation needed]

On 29 May 2019, Charles Sturt University announced it joined the Regional Universities Network (RUN), becoming the seventh member of the group.[34]

In March 2021, Charles Sturt University's first medical students commenced study at the university's Orange campus as part of the Joint Program in Medicine with Western Sydney University. The Joint Program in Medicine is designed to train doctors in the regions to help address the shortfall in rural and regional medical professionals.[citation needed]


Charles Sturt University has six main campuses in Albury–Wodonga, Bathurst, Dubbo, Orange, Port Macquarie, and Wagga Wagga.


Albury–Wodonga campus

The Albury–Wodonga campus is situated on the border of NSW and Victoria. There is a strong focus on environmental Science, education, business and allied health at this campus.[citation needed]

Campus features:


Bathurst campus

The Bathurst campus is home to engineering, communication, education, laws and a broad range of health degrees, including paramedicine and exercise science.[citation needed]

Campus features:


Dubbo campus

The Dubbo campus offers social work, nursing, and preparation courses with a focus on delivering education to First Nations students.[citation needed]

Campus features:


Orange campus

The Orange campus offers courses with a strong focus on allied health, medical sciences, dentistry, medicine, and pharmacy.[citation needed]

Campus features:

Port Macquarie

Port Macquarie campus

The Port Macquarie campus is the university's newest and first coastal regional campus. Course offerings at the campus continue to expand as the university's presence in the Mid-North Coast grows.[citation needed]

Campus features:

Wagga Wagga

Wagga Wagga campus

Situated on the banks of the Murrumbidgee River, the Wagga Wagga campus is the university's agricultural and sciences hub. Students can also study a range of animal and veterinary sciences, education, business, allied health, information technology, and humanities degrees.[citation needed]

Campus features:

Other study locations

Faculties and academic departments

Charles Sturt University has three main faculties, each offering a range of courses and discipline opportunities. Each faculty comprises a number of schools and centres for specific areas of study and research:[35]

Faculty of Arts and Education

The faculty's arts discipline covers performing and visual arts, art history, communications, history, human services, First Nations studies, literature, philosophy, sociology, and theology. The education side of the faculty offers a range of courses in teacher education and information and library studies. Schools and centres include:[citation needed]

Faculty of Business, Justice and Behavioural Sciences

This faculty brings together a range of courses in areas of business, justice and behavioural sciences disciplines. The justice side of the faculty covers policing, security, law, customs, excise and border management. The behavioural science discipline offers psychology courses. Schools and centres include:

Faculty of Science and Health

The science faculty is one of the most broadly based scientific academic concentrations in Australasia. Schools include:



Charles Sturt University offers courses across the following career areas:


Charles Sturt University libraries operate at its main campuses. The libraries offer eBooks, eJournals, encyclopedias, multimedia resources and course readings through Primo Search. The libraries also provide online library workshops, library resource guides and video tutorials.[39]

Awards, rankings and recognition

Graduate employment rate

Charles Sturt University has the highest graduate employment rate in Australia. More than 84.7 percent of undergraduates find full-time employment within four months of graduating.[40] The Quality Indicators for Learning and Teaching (QILT) 2021 Graduate Outcomes Survey (GOS) – Longitudinal found 93.9 percent of Charles Sturt University undergraduates were in full-time employment three years after graduation. The survey also found that 95.2 percent of the university's postgraduate coursework graduates were in full-time employment three years after graduation.[citation needed]

Professor Andrew Clark was recognized by the Australian Society of Viticulture and Oenology in their Awards for Excellence.

Student life

Student Senate

Students at Charles Sturt University are represented by Charles Sturt University Student Senate – formerly the CSU Students' Association (CSUSA). Charles Sturt's Student Senate is the overarching university student body and comprises the following affiliates:


The Charles Sturt University Football Club at Bathurst was formed under the name of Bathurst Teachers College in 1963, making it one of the oldest football clubs in Bathurst. The club changed its name multiple times to match the educational institute, gaining its current name when Mitchell College was rebranded to Charles Sturt University.[citation needed]


Charles Sturt University is governed by a 16-member Council, whose members include the chancellor and vice-chancellor. Dr Michele Allan, a company director, food industry and agribusiness specialist with an academic background in biomedical science, management and law, is the current and third chancellor of the university since 3 December 2014; and Professor Renée Leon became the fifth vice-chancellor on 1 September 2021.[41]

Coat of arms

Coat of arms of Charles Sturt University
Granted by the Kings of Arms, 1989.
Out of a coronet of Seven-pointed Stars Or, a demi-Lion rampant Gules, its sinister paw holding three Roses Gules and stems Vert.
A Wreath of the Colours (Or and Vert)
A closed helmet
For The Public Good
Other elements
Mantling Vert doubled Or.
The mantling, wreath and motto scroll colours of green and gold, are taken from the family arms of Captain Charles Sturt, the university's namesake, as granted in 1691. The red demi-lion in the crest is also taken from the arms of Sturt, while the three roses in its paw are also from the Sturt arms and refer to the original establishment of the university in three cities: Albury-Wodonga, Bathurst, and Wagga Wagga.[42] The coronet comprises gold Commonwealth Stars for Australia. The appearance of a flower of Swainsona formosa (or Sturt's Desert Pea) in the escutcheon also refers to Sturt, who noted its appearance in central Australia in 1844. The three blue wavy lines commonly refer to waterways, and allude to the position of the three original university campuses on river-based cities (Albury-Wodonga on the Murray River, Bathurst on the Macquarie River, and Wagga Wagga on the Murrumbidgee River). The open book is a reference to enlightenment and learning, and is commonly used in arms granted to educational institutions. The motto refers to the desire for exploration, discovery and learning, and is a quote from Sturt himself: "A wish to contribute to the public good led me to undertake those journeys which cost me so much ... I sought that career, not, I admit, without a feeling of ambition as should ever pervade a soldier's breast, but chiefly with an earnest desire to promote the public good, and certainly without any hope of any other reward than the credit due to the successful enterprise."[43]

Notable people

Main article: List of Charles Sturt University people

Members of Charles Sturt University alumni include notable TV presenters Andrew Denton, Amanda Keller, Latika Bourke and Hamish Macdonald.[44] Leslie Weston was awarded a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Science in 2023.[45] Craig Steven Wright, who has falsely claimed himself to be the inventor of Bitcoin, has several degrees from Charles Sturt University.[citation needed]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Campus histories".
  2. ^ "Bathurst Teachers' College, Mitchell College of Advanced Education, and Charles Sturt University publications and transcripts - Charles Sturt University Regional Archives".
  3. ^ "Emblems and colours".
  4. ^ a b c d Charities
  5. ^ "CSU announces new Chancellor-elect" (Press release). Charles Sturt University. 20 July 2014. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 2 March 2015.
  6. ^ "University Council".
  7. ^ a b 2022 Annual report
  8. ^ a b c d "Charles Sturt at a Glance". Charles Sturt University. Retrieved 8 February 2024.
  9. ^ "Our campuses".
  10. ^ "Our history".
  11. ^ "About".
  12. ^ "Our mascot".
  13. ^ Gorrel, Graham (1 March 2013). "Charles Sturt University the jewel in city's crown". The Daily Advertiser. Archived from the original on 21 April 2013. Retrieved 7 July 2013.
  14. ^ a b "Charles Sturt University - Associate Degree in Policing Practice". Good Universities Guide. Retrieved 3 April 2024.
  15. ^ "Charles Sturt University Act 1989 No. 76" (PDF). Government of New South Wales. Australasian Legal Information Institute. 1989. Archived (PDF) from the original on 3 December 2013. Retrieved 7 July 2013.
  16. ^ Morris, Sherry (1999). Wagga Wagga, a history. Bobby Graham Publishers, Wagga Wagga. ISBN 1-875247-12-2.
  17. ^ "State Records Archives Investigator". NSW State Records. Government of New South Wales. Archived from the original on 25 June 2014. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  18. ^ a b "State Records Archives Investigator". NSW State Records. Government of New South Wales. Archived from the original on 23 June 2014. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  19. ^ "Study in the UK, Europe, USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand with Study Group". Archived from the original on 22 October 2009. Retrieved 4 November 2009.
  20. ^ "Study in the UK, Europe, USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand with Study Group". Archived from the original on 3 December 2009. Retrieved 4 November 2009.
  21. ^ "Study in the UK, Europe, USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand with Study Group". Archived from the original on 28 November 2009. Retrieved 22 November 2009.
  22. ^ "Charles Sturt University Study Centres". Retrieved 5 May 2023.
  23. ^ "Charles Sturt University". Auditor-General's Report to Parliament. 2: 17. 2007. Archived from the original on 29 March 2016. Retrieved 7 July 2013.
  24. ^ "Welcome – CSU Ontario School of Education – Charles Sturt University". 26 March 2012. Archived from the original on 17 January 2015. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  25. ^ "CSU Port Macquarie campus opens". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 1 May 2012. Archived from the original on 13 December 2013. Retrieved 10 July 2013.
  26. ^ Amber, Murray. "History and Partners". Archived from the original on 26 February 2017. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
  27. ^ "CSU's visual brand". Charles Sturt University. May 2012. Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 7 July 2013.
  28. ^ Coughlan, Kate (14 February 2011). "Sturt's pea flower CSU's new logo". The Border Mail. Archived from the original on 2 December 2013. Retrieved 7 July 2013.
  29. ^ "CSU: Port Macquarie". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 1 July 2016. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  30. ^ Charles Sturt University Cogeneration Plant Archived 3 August 2014 at the Wayback Machine,, Retrieved 16 September 2013
  31. ^ "Australia's first and only carbon neutral university". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 29 July 2016. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  32. ^ "UNIVERSITIES WELCOME FEDERAL GOVERNMENT'S RURAL HEALTH STRATEGY". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 6 June 2019. Retrieved 6 June 2019.
  33. ^ "New medical school network for regional and rural NSW underway". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 6 June 2019. Retrieved 6 June 2019.
  34. ^ "Charles Sturt University to Join Regional Universities Network 29 May 2019". Archived from the original on 29 May 2019. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  35. ^ "Faculties and Schools". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 5 August 2016. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  36. ^ "Faculty of Arts and Education". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 3 July 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
  37. ^ "Faculty of Business, Justice and Behavioural Sciences". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 10 July 2016. Retrieved 5 July 2016.
  38. ^ "Faculty of Science". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 11 December 2018. Retrieved 28 July 2016.
  39. ^ "Charles Sturt University Library Client Survey" (PDF). Charles Sturt University Library. May 2021. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2 July 2021. Retrieved 27 July 2021.
  40. ^ "On with the job: CSU tops graduate employment survey six years running". Port Macquarie News. 6 October 2021. Archived from the original on 23 July 2022. Retrieved 23 July 2022.
  41. ^ "Vice-Chancellor's Profile". Charles Sturt University. Archived from the original on 14 March 2011. Retrieved 17 September 2021.
  42. ^ Low, Charles (1971). A Roll of Australian Arms. Adelaide: Rigby Limited. p. 157. ISBN 0-85179-149-2. OCLC 246821.
  43. ^ "Emblems and colours". Charles Sturt University. Retrieved 24 September 2023.
  44. ^ "Hamish Macdonald – Bachelor of Communication (Journalism) – 2002". Our community: Share your story. Charles Sturt University. 2018. Archived from the original on 14 April 2018. Retrieved 14 April 2018.
  45. ^ "Academy welcomes 20 new Fellows for their outstanding contributions to science | Australian Academy of Science". Retrieved 12 June 2023.