VLS Announcements 98 - 29 July 2016

Dear Colleagues,

First of all I would like to thank everyone who volunteered to help at Open Day. The day was a huge success with close to 20,000 visitors University-wide and nearly 1,000 people passing our directional tent every hour. It was one of our best Open Day's yet, which wouldn't have been possible without the hard work of so many enthusiastic and dedicated members of staff and students

I would also like to say a special thank you to Kris Warren, Bethany Jackson and Ian Robertson for their contributions to the Postgraduate Orientation Evening. The turnout was very impressive for mid-year and shows ongoing interest in our postgraduate offerings. The breakout sessions delivered by Kris, Bethany and Ian were fantastic and much appreciated by the students.

Alongside these congratulations for work with new and future students, I must also congratulate Ellie Crispe who won two major awards at the Bain Fallon conference in Melbourne this week. At the joint scientific meeting of the ANZCVSc and Equine Veterinarians Australia (EVA) Ellie won the AVZCVSc prize for best research paper and the highly prestigious Reginald R Pascoe Prize from the EVA for best clinical or research paper at the meeting. Her paper was titled: The association between exercise-induced pulmonary haemorrhage and race-day performance in Thoroughbred racehorses. Murdoch was also well represented by an excellent research paper from former resident and staff member Annemarie Cullimore, and a terrific research poster from current resident in Anaesthesia Keely Wilson.

Last but certainly not least I would like to congratulate Michael Klunzinger who was awarded the best student paper of 2015 by the Australian Journal of Zoology, for his paper "Range decline and conservation status of Westralunio carteri Iredale, 1934 (Bivalvia: Hyriidae) from south-western Australia". 

Kind regards

David Hampson
Dean, School of Veterinary and Life Sciences.

Submissions for the announcements can be made by emailing Mhairi Finlayson COB each Tuesday for publication Thursday

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

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

  • Brave New World 2030: The Future of L&T

    You are invited to share your experiences with us at the Conversation by contributing to the Learning and Teaching Showcase on 8th September. The event will be part of a two-day Conversation event including a keynote from Prof Darrell Evans (Monash).

    The submission details are attached. We look forward to your participation at the event.

    Registration for the Conversation will be open in the first week of August.

  • SRT Workshops and Lab Induction Semester 2

    All new staff, new post-doctoral personnel and new honours and postgraduate students involved in research and/or teaching in the laboratory MUST attend the SRT Laboratory Safety Induction and are recommended to attend the RAMP workshop. The RAMP workshop is also recommended as a refresher session for supervisors.

    SRT Laboratory Safety Induction

    SRT Lab Safety Induction Details

    The SRT Laboratory Safety Induction provides an introduction to general laboratory safety, chemical safety and biosafety here at Murdoch. Please note that the information provided in this induction is introductory. Your supervisor must provide additional safety training specific for your laboratory and activity.

    Semester 2 Sessions

    Date: Wednesday, 10th August 2016
    Time: 9.15am – 11.15am
    Location: Robertson Lecture Theatre


    You will be required to complete a quiz following the SRT Laboratory Safety Induction .


    Please contact to enrol.

    RAMP Workshops

    RAMP Workshop Details

    The RAMP Workshop will introduce you to the Safety in Research and Teaching Committee (SRTC) and to the Risk Assessment for Murdoch Processes (RAMP). RAMP must be completed for all Murdoch research projects and teaching activities and this workshop will provide you with essential information in completing this process.

    Semester 2 Sessions

    Wednesday 10th August 2016: 10am – 11pm
    Wednesday 7th September 2016: 10am – 11am
    Wednesday 5th October 2016: 10am – 11am
    Wednesday 2nd November 2016: 10am – 11am


    It is advised the workshop is attended closer to the time you will need to complete a RAMP Form.


    The RAMP Workshop is run through and booked through the GREAT Program.

  • Budgeting for Research Guidelines

    The document Budgeting for Research Guidelines (302) has now been published on the University Policies and Procedures Manual (PPM) webpage:

    These guidelines were drafted in consultation with School Management and research staff, and are designed to assist applicants with constructing budgets for research projects. Included within the guidelines are topics such as:

    • Contacts and support, pre and post-award – the role of the research support officer (RSO) in Finance;
    • Application budget vs Murdoch project budget once award has been granted;
    • Application process for University cash support from Strategic Research Funds;
    • Inclusion of indirect overheads component in application budgets

    In the very near future we will be commencing the University 2017-2021 budget cycle, so it would be appreciated if you could make staff in your respective research groups aware of these guidelines.

  • Academic Learning Support Workshops

    As part of offering an extended orientation experience for incoming students, the Learning Support team at CUTL will run an academic skills workshop each day in Week 1 to help students 'get settled’. Download the Academic Skills Workshops Program.

  • Scholarly Practice of Academic Staff

    The Scholarly Practice of Academic Staff (SPA) unit is about to commence for Semester 2. If you are on academic probation you may be required to take the unit as part of your probationary objectives in which case they may like to get it out of the way this semester if they have the space to do it. Information about this unit is available from

  • Acknowledgement of Country

    As part of the University’s Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP), the RAP Working Group would like to encourage unit coordinators to deliver an ‘acknowledgment of country’ in their first teaching session for Semester 1 and all teaching periods thereafter. An acknowledgment is a way that non-Indigenous people can show respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories, people and cultures and the ongoing relationship of traditional custodians with the land upon which Murdoch’s campuses are located. This small but important gesture demonstrates Murdoch’s commitment to social justice and reconciliation.

    Kulbardi and the Centre for University Teaching and Learning have developed a pre-designed file for download that can be included in unit lecture materials or used as a template for recognition in other forms. This page also contains further information about an acknowledgment to country and contexts within which it may be appropriate for one to be delivered. Please note, for those teaching in Mandurah, there is a separate template to reflect the different custodianship of that area

  • 2017 ARC and NHMC Schemes- Call for Expressions of Interest

    Murdoch University runs an internal Expression of Interest (EOI) process for applications to the ARC and NHMRC schemes. The Office of Research and Innovation is now calling for EOIs from researchers who are intending to submit to the ARC Discovery Programme (Discovery Project, Discovery Indigenous, DECRA and Future Fellowships) and to the NHMRC schemes (including Projects and Fellowships).

    PLEASE READ: the attached document “Guidelines for submissions to the ARC and NHMRC Major Grant Rounds” for important information about this process, when to submit an EOI or IRMA coversheet, deadlines, requirements and the assessment of EOIs.

    Applicants required to submit an EOI must do so by the 9th September 2016 using the appropriate EOI scheme form to EOIs submitted after this deadline will only be accepted with DVC R&I approval.

    Applicants should discuss their intention to submit with their Associate Dean of Research in the first instance. Applicants who are uncertain whether they are required to submit an EOI or an IRMA coversheet as per the attached guidelines should discuss this with the Grants team.

    Please see the ARC and NHMRC 2016 and 2017 deadlines and the Submission Guidelines and Deadlines for ARC and NHMRC.

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

  • ARO Weekly Newsletter #29 - 25th July

    Please find attached, the ARO newsletter for the week beginning 25th July.

  • NWAFU Study Program Opening Ceremony

    Our School is currently hosting a group of 29 students and 2 faculty members from the Chinese North West Agriculture and Forestry University (NWAFU) from 22th July to 19th August. Murdoch University and NWAFU have been developing a strategic partnership over the last five years and establishing joint research projects and interdisciplinary collaboration. This is the fifth time we are hosting students from NWAFU.

    During their visit, the students will be exposed to various aspects of our work, through lectures, lab demonstrations, WA Government Departments, Industry and Farm visits. Dr Wei Xu and Ms Linda Wu (R&D Office) are coordinating the study program this year. Both Wei and Linda are likely to contact several of you to invite participation in this year’s exercise. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.

  • Access Experience Fair 2016

    The Careers and Employment Office is running an Access Experience Fair between 1100 and 1300 in Bush Court on Wednesday 3rd August. Promoting practical experience through internships, vacation work, volunteering and professional association engagement, the purpose of this event is to make students aware of the many ways they can improve their employability before they graduate. If you have a chance to include mention of this in your teaching before the event, please do so. Attached is a power point slide that can be added to presentations and a promotional poster.

  • Counselling Service Workshops Semester 2, 2016

    Please find attached the outline for the psycho-educational workshops we have planned for Semester 2, 2016. The Counselling Service are running these workshops via Uniedge, however any/all students are welcome to register and attend. See the attached flyer for further details.

  • Ravensthorpe Wildflower Show

    All staff and students are invited to join the Ravensthorpe Wildflower Show to assist with the ID of flowers and to learn more about their unique environment. More information is available on the attached flyer.

  • Murdoch Staff Games

    Registrations for the Staff Games 2016 are now open, register at This year VLS are teaming up with the School of Law on the Ninja Turtles team. More information s available at

  • Friday Drinks - BBQ inauguration

    Thanks to Josh we now have a BBQ facility outside the BSB common room and therefore will be inaugurating our new BBQ on Friday 29/7. So Friday after work drinks and sausages for a gold coin donation. Where? BSB common room (building 240, room 2.020, Starting at 4pm. All VLS staff and students welcome.

  • Dog N Jog – Sunday 18th September 2016

    The Dog N Jog is on again! It’s an 8km run or 4km walk or run around our South Street Campus with energetic pooches and friends. Registrations are now open! Go to - Hope to see you there!

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

  • Dogs in Warfare

    Emeritus Professor Boyd Jones is visiting Murdoch to assist in teaching residents and undergraduates in small animal medicine and is with us at Murdoch for a month until mid-August. Boyd has had a distinguished career as an academic in companion animal internal medicine at Massey University and at UCD, where he was also Dean for a few years.

    Please join Boyd who will be presenting “Dogs in Warfare” in the 4th Year Lecture Theatre (Room VCS2.008) Thursday 4 August at 12:30 concluding at 1:30.

    The last two years have seen 100 year anniversaries of events and battles in the Great war(1914-1918). The role of horses was huge but the part dogs played in that conflict is often forgotten. These anniversaries have been a reminder of how animals, especially dogs, assisted troops in the conflict. This talk will look at aspects of the history of dogs in warfare from ancient times to the present day, including during the first world war.

    The talk will provide some information, some anecdotes, some Australian and New Zealand links, some science, nothing too temporal but it will be a tribute to “the war dogs”

  • WA Forum on Contract Cheating

    Contract cheating, a term coined by Lancaster and Clarke in 2006*, describes the situation where students purchase bespoke academic assessments and submit the work as if it was their own. This issue has been rapidly gaining traction globally due to the ease of accessing contractors within the digital space. Students are able to quickly outsource their work for a relatively low price due to increasing competition within the industry. Current assessment practices and technologies are not readily able to identify the affected work. Through presentations, panels and discussions, the WA Forum on Contract Cheating will examine this problem from a number of perspectives.

    The forum will include:

    • Analysis of common business models and prevalence of contract cheating
    • Research findings on new methods of detecting contract cheating
    • Student perspectives and case studies of motivators and drivers of behaviour
    • How institutions can respond: recent developments in policies and practices
    Please join us for a stimulating and interesting day on Thursday October 13, 2016 at Curtin University. Register early as spaces are limited. The cost for the forum is $100 for the day and will include:
    • Attendance at all sessions including material made available electronically;
    • Refreshments and Lunch

    Registrations are open.

    * Clarke, R., and Lancaster, T. "Eliminating the successor to plagiarism? Identifying the usage of contract cheating sites." Proceedings of 2nd International Plagiarism Conference. 2006.

  • Murdoch Agricultural Research Symposium

    See the attached program.

  • T Cell Memory: Cellular Gymnastics of Inducation and Maintenance

    Dr Ben Seddon is presenting at the Australian Society for Immunology's international visiting speaker program. He will be presenting on "T Cell Memory: Cellular Gymnastics of Induction and Maintenance:. More information available on the flyer attached.

  • The Natural World of the Kimberley: A Kimberly Society Seminar

    This seminar will look at the biodiversity of the Kimberley and what is being done to preserve this unique environment. More information is available on the Program flyer, see attached registration form.

  • Combined Biological Sciences Meeting

    The 26th Annual Combined Biological Sciences Meeting is just around the corner, how will your lab participate in 2016? This year’s conference, will once again be held at the University Club, The University of Western Australia, on the 26th August. VLS will be identified as a session sponsor and would like to encourage staff and students to submit papers and papers and to attend, please note that the submission deadline has been extended until COB Monday 1st August.

    Invited plenary speaker positions for 2016 are being filled and information about our guests and their presentations can be found at This year’s conference will also feature a number of specialist area symposia with each featuring a prominent keynote speaker and numerous invited local speakers. As they are confirmed details of these keynote speakers and their presentations can be found at

    Registrations are now open so please visit to book your place. (Early Bird prices until COB 1st of August). To encourage your participation, VLS will pay for up to 6 student registration, more information available here. **Update: the 6 student spots paid for by VLS have been allocated to students from different clusters who are submitting manuscripts and talks**

    Abstract submission is also open at and the submission deadline has been extended until the COB Monday the 1st of August. Details of the various awards on offer can be found at

  • The 1st International Long-Term Ecological Research Open Science Meeting

    Time is rapidly running out to register and book accommodation for the 1st International Long-Term Ecological Research Open Science Meeting, on 9-13 October. Given that the venue is in Skukuza, Kruger National Park, reservations have to be paid here 2 months in advance. The park is home to approximately 2000 plants, (404 woody, 224 grasses), 53 fishes, 34 amphibians, 118 reptiles, 517 birds and 147 mammals (still counting the insects).

    Everyone with a strong interest in ecosystem science, social-ecology, environmental science and environmental policy is most welcome to join and contribute to this unique global meeting of ecosystem scientists and global programs - in a world-renowned African nature reserve, larger than many countries.

    Please find attached a summary of the proceedings. The detailed program of speakers and events will soon follow.

  • CSIRO Land and Water 2 Hour Seminar: Wildfire Science and Management in WA

    The CSIRO are hosting a 2 hour seminar on "Wildfire Science and Management in WA" on Thursday 4th August at 3pm in the CSIRO Auditorium (147 Underwood Avenue, Floreat). Dr Neil Burrows, from the WA Department of Parks and Wildlife, Adrian Allen and Jackson parker, both from the WA Department of Fire and Emergency Services will be presenting. This event is free of charge and no RSVP is required.

    Three 30 minute talks will be given followed by a question and answer period. The outline of each talk is:

    • Neil Burrows: Forest landscapes of south-west Australia are fire-prone and fire maintained. Conservation and land managers are required to manage bushfire to meet multiple objectives including the protection of human communities, conservation and environmental values. Together with bush-fire prepared communities, and effective detection and suppression capabilities, prescribed (planned) fire is important for managing flammable fuels to reduce the adverse impacts of unplanned fires on human communities, industry, infrastructure, wildlife and the environment. In fire-prone environments, appropriate prescribed fire is also integral to maintaining biodiversity and ecosystem health. Successful application of prescribed fire for multiple objectives requires integration of scientific knowledge and practical experience, and an organisational commitment to adaptive management in a changing world.
    • Adrian Allen: Aurora is a National bushfire detection, prediction, simulation and early warning system. It combines technological developments by the University of Western Australia (the Australis simulator) with Landgate (FireWatch system) and fire behaviour expertise from the Department of Fire and Emergency Services, to simulate the direction, intensity, and rate of bushfire spread in near real-time, to provide fire agencies, an improved capability in planning and responding to bushfires. In this presentation, Adrian will provide an overview and interactive demonstration of the Aurora system.
    • Jackson Parker: An Introduction to the State Planning Policy 3.7 Planning in Bushfire Prone Areas in December 2015 which aims to influence decision-making across all stages of the planning and development process to reduce the impact of bushfire on property and infrastructure in Western Australia. A second short talk on Savannah Burning in the Kimberly the what, were, how and who; including burning for carbon.

    About the Speakers

    • Neil Burrows: Since graduating in 1977, Neil has worked as an applied bushfire scientist, fire policy and fire management advisor, and science director with the Department of Parks and Wildlife and its predecessors. His diverse research themes include fire behaviour and fire ecology in a range of ecosystems including eucalypt forests, woodlands and softwood plantations in south-west Western Australia and spinifex grasslands in the Western Desert. In 1994, he completed a PhD on modelling the behaviour and some impacts of fire in jarrah forests. Neil also has experience in fire management planning and prescribed burning, and during summer, participates in bushfire suppression as part of a pre-formed Incident Management Team. He is an experienced bushfire investigator and assists with major incident reviews, inquiries and legal processes following significant bushfires. Neil is an Adjunct Professor, Faculty of Natural and Agricultural Science, at the University of Western Australia
    • Adrian Allen: Adrian Allen graduated from Curtin University with a Bachelor of Science with Honours, in 1995. Since graduating he has been employed in numerous roles however primarily as a spatial scientist, at Landgate’s Satellite Remote sensing Services, at the Leeuwin Centre for Earth Sensing Technologies in WA. Over the course of his career, Adrian’s had the opportunity to work on a diverse range of satellite remote sensing mapping and monitoring projects. He and his team have developed many interactive web mapping systems for emergency management, agricultural sciences, ocean sciences and natural resource management. Having managed Landgate’s Satellite Remote Sensing Services (SRSS) section for a period, he now manages a team that develops Landgate’s interoperable web services and decision support systems including national systems such as Aurora, Firewatch, FloodMap and Pastures from Space.
    • Jackson Parker: Jackson is currently the Acting Director of Bushfire and Environmental Protection at the Department of Fire and Emergency Services (DFES). Since 2013 Jackson has been a Bushfire Risk Management / Planner and Bushfire Behaviourist for DFES. Prior to this Jackson has under taken planning and operational roles with the Forest Products Commission and the now Department of Parks and Wildlife in Forestry and bushfire management and worked on the Carbon Farming Policy for the Department of Agriculture and Food. Jackson has a Bachelor of Science majoring in Biology and a Masters of Urban and Regional Planning. Jackson is a contributing author of Bulletin 4865 – Carbon farming in relation to Western Australian agriculture 2014, Pine as a fast food: Foraging Ecology of an Endangered Cockatoo in a forestry landscape 2013 and the Draft Gnangara Sustainability Strategy 2009.
  • Forrest Scholarships

    The Forrest Research Foundations awards lucrative scholarships to outstanding domestic and international students to complete a PhD at any university in Western Australia. More information about this scholarship is available on the attached flyer and at

  • National Science Week "24 Hours of Biology"

    UWA is hosting a 24 Hours of Biology Event during National Science Week and are looking for speakers on Australian Wildlife that can do a talk or interview about their research.

    For an interview they will ask questions about the speaker, how they got into their field, why they got into their field, what marsupials are, why they're important and the speaker's research is important.

    This event is about exploring the expanse of Biology from ecosystems down to cells and genes, over two days- Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st of August. They will split the two days into four themes: Ecosystems and Behaviour (Saturday), Plants and Animals (Saturday), Body Systems (Sunday) and Cells and Genes (Sunday); and we explore each theme through talks, interviews and workshops for the general public.

    The proposed time slot is:
    Saturday 20th of August
    Audience: all ages/ general public
    @ UWA, Bayliss Building (School of Chemistry and Biochemistry) *This will be filmed and live streamed*

    We are also inviting people to submit videos or e-posts to show on the day and to be live streamed online (content needs only to be biology based, doesn't have to be about marsupials).

    Please see the Expression of Interest and the Submission Guidelines for Videos and e-posters forms.

  • Inaugural VLS Ball

    095 VLS Ball Poster.jpg