VLS Announcements 86 - 6 May 2016

Dear Colleagues,

Animal Open Day is being held today to celebrate the launch of the Animal Hospital. Staff and students can enjoy petting animals and other activities on Bush Court between 12 and 2pm.

Please join me in giving a warm welcome to Professor Tom Riley who starts with us this week in a 0.4 FTE position in Public Health. Tom is a well know figure in microbiology in Australia. He has special research interests in Clostridium difficile infections in humans and animals, including consideration of environment reservoirs and interactions with antimicrobial use.

Kind regards

David Hampson

Dean, School of Veterinary and Life Sciences.

Submissions for the announcements can be made by emailing Emma Thorp  by COB each Tuesday for publication on  Thursday

Note: items that require action are marked with a red flagfor action.   Click on [Expand All/Collapse All] below to view the entire stories.

Teaching and Research News [Expand All] | [Collapse All]

  • New Colombo Plan 2017 - Applications now open and UPDATED application form - message from Jeanette Geesmanfor action

    The Australian Government just made two slight changes to the application form. I have attached the new form and would be grateful if you could use it instead of the old one. The changes are the addition of a “program is short than 2 weeks” option and the possibility to provide the number of students for each year rather than a total number. Also, if you return a scanned copy of this document, please also provide the word.doc. Your assistance is greatly appreciated. As a reminder, the deadline is next week Friday, 13th May, COB. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any further questions.

  • Project sets vets for success

    A new project to help veterinary graduates make the transition into professional practice and a lifelong successful career has been launched by a group of pioneering vet schools.

    VetSet2Go is an international collaboration led by academics from Murdoch University, which aims to bridge the gap between undergraduate veterinary courses and employers, client and graduate expectations.

    For further information see here -
  • Forrest Research Foundation - Q&A Session

    Professor Mark Cassidy, Warden of the Forrest Research Foundation, and Ms Madelaine Fisher, Executive Officer of the Forrest Research Foundation, will be on campus at Murdoch University on Thursday 19th of May and have requested the opportunity to meet with academics from each school.

    They will be on campus to meet with Murdoch’s current Forrest Research Foundation Scholar and plan to record footage/interviews with her to be used to promote the Forrest Research Foundation Scholarships and Murdoch as a destination. This is a wonderful opportunity to promote Murdoch as, outside of UWA, we are the only institution to have had a successful applicant to this prestigious program. They would like to meet with academics here with the aim of clearing up any confusion about the scholarship so Murdoch staff can promote it to their students. There will be the opportunity in the future to have them come back to present to the Honours cohort, in conjunction with Graduate Research staff, to encourage applications for admission and scholarships to Murdoch commencing in 2017 while simultaneously applying for Forrest Research Foundation Scholarships. We can accommodate a small number of academic staff from each school. If you would like invited to this Q&A Session please send an email to Dale Banks by next Friday (May 6) so that diary requests can be sent. A specific time and location for the session are still to be set.
  • Honours Information Session

    An honours information session to promote honours for mid-year and end of year will be held on Friday 13th May in the Postgraduate Suite ECL 2.031 from 11.30-1.30pm.

    If you have projects opportunities for honours students and you are interested in participating please complete the template and bring along a poster to promote your research area on the day. Please send the completed project templates to the Honours Coordinator Jacqueline Dyer by Monday 2nd May 2016. For more information and to confirm your attendance, contact Honours Coordinator Jacqueline Dyer
  • Centre for Rhizobium Studies: Publication of ‘Working with Rhizobia” manual.

    Professor John Howieson and Emeritus Professor Mike Dilworth have produced the first legume-rhizobia techniques manual in over 30 years for all those working in the field of symbiotic nitrogen fixation. This manual brings together state-of-the-art methods for the study of root-nodule bacteria, both in the free-living state and in symbiosis with legumes.

    The nitrogen-fixing symbiosis between legumes and soil bacteria (known as rhizobia) is fundamental to sustainable agriculture. While synthetic nitrogen fertilisers have boosted agricultural outputs, they require large amounts of fossil fuels, whose burning increases production of greenhouse gases. In contrast, rhizobia are able to “fix" atmospheric nitrogen and supply it to their legume partners, and so can provide food and fibre to a growing world population while maintaining soil fertility and the natural environment. This process is called symbiotic nitrogen fixation.

    In each chapter, the manual introduces a topic and provides guidance on how study of the symbiosis might best be tackled. Detailed descriptions of the protocols that need to be followed, potential problems and pitfalls are provided. Topics covered include acquiring, recognising, growing and storing rhizobia, experimenting with strains in the laboratory, glasshouse and field, and applying contemporary molecular and genetic methodologies to assist in the study of rhizobia.

    The manual is especially relevant for researchers in agricultural systems that are constrained by nitrogen infertility, but where farmers cannot afford the high cost of manufactured fertiliser. Research support for this manual was provided by Murdoch University, ACIAR, the Crawford Fund and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation (through the N2Africa project), and Australian Wool Innovation and the Grains Research and Development Council (through the National Rhizobium Program).
    The manual is available online here
  • Free Coffee

    Want a free coffee in your morning?

    Complete a 10 minute study anytime between 10am and 2pm this Tuesday - Saturday and receive a free guild coffee voucher! You will be asked to score 24 uncooked meat samples wrapped in plastic based on their colour (more red or brown), how much you like the colour and your willingness to purchase each sample. So if you are a person (over 18 and under 70 years old) who eats sheep meat at least once a month, and is not colour blind, then we invite you to come down to the Meat Science Lab located near the Veterinary Sciences pergola. And remember participants will receive a coffee voucher valid at the Guild library coffee shop in recognition of their time and effort.

    For further information contact Maddison Corlett.

  • Pig Day Out

    About 100 people attended this year’s Pig Day Out, hosted by the WA Pork Producers’ Association and the Department of Agriculture and Food WA, at Technology Park, Bentley including a number of Murdoch researchers from the School. For further information see here

  • Serpentine-Jarrahdale Food & Farm Alliance

    The Serpentine-Jarrahdale Food & Farm Fest 2016 was held on Saturday 9 April 2016. Approximately 3500 visitors passed through Murdoch Stall which hosted activities such as the ‘Power of legumes’ demonstration and the animal science display which demonstrated how modern day gene selection contributes to the choice of animals to breed from.

    Visitors learnt about the history and many uses of legumes in society and were able to view legume noodles under a microscope. Visitors took home branded pea seed packs with rhibozium to plant in their garden. The packs also include a recipe to use once the peas have grown. Visitors were also introduced to good and bad characteristics in sheep and the heritability of these qualities. In other words, why do we choose one animal and not the other? To make things a bit more hands on we will bring an orchidometer which corresponds to testicle size and the fertility of offspring. A body condition scoring kit was available to practise scoring and determining whether a sheep is suited to breed or not.

    Veterinary & Life Sciences course brochures were distributed as well as Centre for Rhizobium Studies pea packs with flyers, Centre for Rhizobium Studies legume recipe flyer and the Whitby Falls Farm flyer. The overall feeling and comments from the community on Murdoch’s presence at the event was positive and people were very pleased to see Murdoch there. Both the ‘Power of Legume’s and ‘Animal Science’ activities were well received.

    We had five students from Veterinary & Life Sciences that were paid as student ambassadors to run the Murdoch activities over the course of the day.

Staff News and Events [Expand All] | [Collapse All]

  • Australian Research Management Society WA Foundation Level Accreditation Modules - Registration Now Open

    Two accreditation modules will be delivered in WA. Murdoch will be hosting the delivery of two Modules on the 3rd June.

    It is open to individuals who: ·
    · New to research management/administration (less than 5 years)
    · Not new to research management/administration but seeking to update their knowledge
    · Seeking to learn more about research administration
    · Not new to research management but may be new to a specific element of it
    · Seeking to extend their knowledge beyond existing specialisations. Date: Friday 3rd June 2016

    Modules available:

    8.30am - 12.15pm
    Module C: Legislation as it affects research in Australia - presented by Dr Mark Dixon

    1.00pm - 4.30pm
    Module H: Pre-award Grants Processes

    Location: ECL 1.031, Economics, Commerce & Law Building - Murdoch University, 90 South Street, Murdoch
    Cost: $280 for members and $380 for non-members.

    Registrations are available now through the events tab in your member profile.

    Non-members wanting to register for these accreditation modules please contact the ARMS Administration Officer  or +61 8 8201 5592.

    Minimum numbers (8 registrants) for each module must be met in order for the event to proceed.

  • 2016 May CareerConnect Newsletter - Murdoch Careers and Employment Centre

    The May CareerConnect Newsletter is now available here.

  • Re-Team newsletter - May

    The Re-Team newsletter for May is now available

  • Welcome to new GP staff - message from Maria Tarr

    On behalf of General Practice we would like to welcome Melanie Hondema as our new GP nurse, some of you may already know Mel from her previous time spent at Murdoch. We would also like to welcome three new Vet's to GP – Susan Walsh, Katia Dixon & Seven Devery who you will see on various occasions working some shift's within GP. Please introduce yourselves and say Hi when passing them in the corridor.

  • Do you manage a social media platform on behalf of a centre/group/unit/ related to the School of VLS?

    Central Marketing Services are currently looking at Murdoch University social media footprint for the various research groups/centres/units, currently in the order of 380 different accounts for the whole university, with about 80 to 100 for groups/centres or units related to the School of VLS (Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram accounts).

    Some of those accounts are being kept active and have high numbers of followers but others seem to be inactive/not monitored. This can be very confusing for people looking for Murdoch accounts. Mel McGreevey (Social Media and Content Marketer) is looking at streamlining the numerous social media accounts and is also available to advise schools on best practice for their social media presence. For the upcoming audit of our social media presence, Mel is asking if we could provide a summary of all our existing social media platforms related to the School (not individual accounts). If you manage or know someone who manages a social media account related to activities in the School of VLS, can you please send the following information to by Friday 13th May:

    Name & URL of the social media account – name of administrator(s) – whether it is active/inactive– name of person who would be nominated to get some training if needed.

  • Boat for Sale

    Boat for sale: The Cetacean Research Unit is selling one of their boats: a 1997 Stressl Tri-hull with a 50hp four-stroke outboard engine with its registered trailer. The current written-down value of the vessel is: $2,067 Offers invited. Note: I have recently had the boat looked by a marine mechanic, who has noted that the vessel needs repairs for approx. $2000 to get it sea-worthy. If interested, please contact Lars:

Seminars, Conferences and Scholarships [Expand All] | [Collapse All

  • Free workshops on translational medical and veterinary research in larger animals - 12th and 13th May

    Murdoch University’s School of Veterinary & Life Sciences, The School of Anatomy, Physiology and Human Biology at UWA and the NHMRC Centre of Research Excellence in Preterm Infants will co-host two, half-day workshops on May 12th and 13th focusing on clinical research studies involving large animals.

    The workshop is free, but we ask that you register (see link below) for catering purposes. The aims of these joint workshops are to:

    ·         Highlight existing groups and projects relevant to translational research in larger animals
    ·         Consider both animals as models for human disease, as well as assess developments in human research for use in clinical veterinary disorders
    ·         Discuss current strengths, weaknesses and opportunities for larger animal research in WA
    ·         Develop a strategic plan to enable greater larger animal research capacity in WA in synergy with the WAHTN

  • Endeavour Mobility Grants ­ 2017 Round open for applications (Short-tern Mobility Program (STMP))

    Many of you are busy preparing applications and programs for student exchange with Asian countries under the New Colombo Plan round 2017. There are also opportunities elsewhere in the world and openings to send postgraduate students to Asia (as the New Colombo Plan only caters for undergraduate students).

    As every year, the Department of Education and Training offers mobility grants for programs in countries outside Asia , previously known as STMP (Short-term Mobility Program). Since last year the Department of Education also supports programs for postgraduate students studying in Asia (previously known as AsiaBound).

    Applications are open for:

    Global (non-Asia-Pacific) Regions only
    Undergraduate and Postgraduate students
    Only short-term opportunities ($2,000 per student) opportunities
    Australian citizens and permanent residents only
    Max number of students: 10
    Programs can commence from 1st January 2017 and until 1st March 2018

    Asia Postgraduate
    Asian-Pacific Regions only (please see guidelines)
    Postgraduate students only
    Semester-long ($5,000 per student) and short-term ($2,000 per students) opportunities
    $1,500 project facilitation for School
    A language component ($1,000) can be supported and delivered in-country (off-shore)
    Australian citizens and permanent residents only
    Max number of students: 10
    Programs can commence from 1st January 2017 and until 1st March 2018

    The application form is attached. Jeannette Geesman (x7836, can answer questions. Application forms (one for each project) should be returned to Jeanette by Friday 13th May COB.

  • Kings Park Seminars

    Kings Park offers an ongoing seminar series, please see below for further information.

    Thursday, 28 April 2016 - Sean Tomlinson (Kings Park / UWA) The buzz on Honeybee energetics: Novel radio-isotopic techniques find that Honeybees match their field metabolic rate to their ecosystem ~~~

    Thursday, 12 May 2016 - Ben Miller (Kings Park) Challenges and solutions in Saudi Arabian biodiversity and landscape conservation – Kings Park’s ADA Conservation Strategy Plan project

  • Peer Review of Assessment Workshops - Fremantle Friday 8th July

    A series of national workshops on peer review of assessment designed to provide a support mechanism for higher education institutions as they transition to the new Higher Education Standards Framework (HESF) (2015) will begin in early June.

    The workshops are part of a joint collaboration between the University of Tasmania (UTAS), Education Services Australia (ESA) and Higher Ed Services (HES).

    The Tertiary Education Quality and Standards Agency (TEQSA) is holding roundtables about the HESF and a big part of the standards includes institutions being able to demonstrate evidence of external referencing, peer review and benchmarking.

    TEQSA CEO Anthony McClaran has noted that “peer review is a key tool for quality assurance”. “It is encouraging to see this collaborative initiative taking place and providing the sector with tools and resources in this important area, he said."

    A collaboration agreement, business plan and five-year strategy is currently being finalised by UTAS, ESA and HES that will deliver a sector-wide support mechanism in peer review. The partnership between UTAS, and the not-for-profit organisations, ESA and HES, is initially focused on providing the sector with support resources for peer review of assessment and how this aligns to assuring learning and teaching standards.

    ESA is testing a national online peer review tool with 25 universities and 10 private providers on peer review of assessment.

    The purpose of these workshops are:

    * How do you assure learning and teaching standards?

    * What models of peer review of assessment and good practice examples can be used?

    * Discuss online peer review tool, user roles and security of data

    * Discuss College of Peers process with Deans Councils on how to calibrate and compare discipline standards and align to accreditation

    * Discuss institutional implementation, policy and reporting processes for peer review of assessment

    The national workshops will be 3 hours each, with two sessions per day depending on the sector's needs.
    Cost is only $150.

  • Global Connections Fund - Opportunity

    The Global Connections Fund (GCF) is a component of the Global Innovation Strategy under the Australian Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda. The GCF will enable Australian SMEs to link with international researchers and Australian researchers to link with international SMEs to seize opportunities and explore collaboration projects in areas of importance to the strategic growth sectors of Australia.

    What support is available?
    The GCF is comprised of two types of grants: Priming Grants and Bridging Grants. Priming Grants are small grants of $7,000 to enable Australian SMEs and Australian researchers to physically meet with their international partners and develop their collaborative idea. Bridging Grants are larger follow-on grants (up to $50,000) designed as seed funding capital to enable viable projects to grow in scope and scale, to test commercialisation and proof of concept activities.
    The funding aims to support the Australian Government’s commitment to:

    · Support innovation, science and commercialisation;

    · Increase collaboration between industry, including small and medium enterprise (SME), and the research sector;

    · Enable growth and productivity for globally competitive industry; and

    · Work with priority economies to progress mutually beneficial innovation outcomes.

    Who can I collaborate with?
    The Global Innovation Strategy identified priority economies from which Australian SMEs or researchers can nominate a collaborative project. They include the 28 member states of the European Union (with a focus on Germany, France, Italy and the United Kingdom), Switzerland, Israel, the United States of America, Brazil, India, Singapore, Taiwan, Vietnam, China, the Republic of Korea, Japan and New Zealand.

    What are the priority areas?
    The priority areas align with the key industry sectors under the Australian Government’s Industry Growth Centres Initiative. Applicants are encouraged to engage with the relevant Growth Centre in developing an application. For more information on each Growth Centre’s strategic direction and Industry Knowledge Priorities (when available), please visit the Growth Centre websites listed below.

    · Advanced Manufacturing -

    · Food and Agribusiness -

    · Medical Technologies and Pharmaceuticals

    · Mining Equipment, Technology and Services

    · Oil, Gas and Energy Resources -

    For more information on the Industry Growth Centres Initiative, visit

    How do I apply?

    · Priming Grants will open for Expressions of Interest from April 15th to May 6th 2016.
    · Priming grants can be prepared and lodged any time after April 15th but only once an EOI notice of approval to proceed and an EOI number has been issued.
    · All Priming Grant applications are time stamped and must be received by midnight Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) on May 27th 2016.
    · Applicants will be notified of the outcomes of their grant applications no later than June 30th (midnight AEST).
    · Grant payments to successful applicants will be made during July 2016.

    A call for Bridging Grant applications will be launched later in 2016. For more information on the Global Connections Fund, visit
    For more information on the National Innovation and Science Agenda, visit

  • Presentation at IIID by Associate Professor Wally Langdon Wednesday 11 May at 11am

    Associate Professor Wally Langdon, Principal Research Fellow, School of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of Western Australia, will be presenting a talk on Wednesday 11 May at 11am at the Institute for Immunology & Infectious Diseases. Associate Professor Langdon’s talk is entitled “Inhibition of chemotherapy-induced myelosuppression”. Please see attached flyer for details.

  • Government Learning 2016 - This July in Canberra - 26-27-28 July 2016

    This forum is designed to deliver outstanding content, strategies, best practice and valuable tools to bring the most powerful forms of professional learning back to their organisations.

    There are no sales presentations, as this forum is specifically designed so that delegates learn through every presentation. New ways of learning have been tested and implemented across the Australian public sector, some successfully, some not. Done effectively the benefits become apparent due to its time and cost efficiency and flexible way of getting knowledge across to the targeted people.

  • Working in Diplomacy

    A Seminar with Lyndall Sachs - Women in Diplomacy will be held:
    Thursday 12 May 2016
    2.30 to 4.00pm
    Economics Commerce Law Building 460 ECL2.031

    Lyndall Sachs is a senior career officer of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). She recently returned from Baghdad, where she had served as Australia’s Ambassador to Iraq since 2011. In the course of her 33 year career, Lyndall has worked for the United Nations and the non-government sectors, as well as the Australian Government.

    In addition to DFAT, she has served with the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and the Department of Immigration. Lyndall has lived, worked or travelled in almost every continent. In the early to mid-1990s she worked with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in the former Yugoslavia and then in central Africa. Much of Lyndall’s career has focussed on countries in conflict or emerging from conflict. She will be talking on the subject of working in diplomacy, with a particular focus on the challenges facing women in the field.

    Chair Dr Jane Hutchison Academic Chair – Development Studies Sir Walter Murdoch School of Public Policy and International Affairs

    Thursday 12 May 2016 2.30 to 4.00pm Economics Commerce Law Building 460 ECL2.031

    Kindly RSVP: by 10 May 2016

    Please note photos will be taken for social media purposes. If you do not consent, please advise, as soon as you can, prior the seminar.