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Our History

The Centre for Continuing Education has come a long way. Founded in 1984 by the University of Sydney, we have achieved a contemporary ‘town square’ educational community, where people gather to learn, be enriched and to interact with one another on all important aspects of our social, emotional and intellectual wellbeing.

Our HistoryContinuing education and lifelong learning has always been important to the University of Sydney. Whilst focusing on degree courses for enrolled students, the University of Sydney has always considered CCE an integral part of its interaction with the community by extending access to its resources and expertise, and by acknowledging the important role of education in empowering people to be their best.

Our interest and investment in life-long learning continues to expand and the Centre for Continuing Education meets this need today with over 650 short courses spanning from ancient history to languages and business skills, attracting an enormous range of participants.

1889

A series of Extension Lectures is introduced, modelled on the English University system, with the rationale that the position of universities can be greatly strengthened if they extend the curriculum beyond the core structure taught to enrolled students.

1892

The Extension Board is established: Lectures are focused on literature, history and a wider range of subjects open to all. A joint committee for tutorial classes is also introduced.

1914

The NSW Government makes a special annual grant to the University of Sydney for the employment of a Lecturer and Organiser of Tutorial Classes. Non-award classes are introduced for industrial workers in Sydney, Burwood and Wollongong, thereby catering to a much wider population.

1963

A new Department of Adult Education is founded and the structure of adult education is remodelled to meet the changing needs emerging in the Australian community. Most participants in continuing education are well-educated and looking to broaden their interests.

1977

The Board of Adult Education is established. Government funding to the University is reduced, which responds by establishing a working party to report on ways in which adult and continuing education might be maintained and developed.

1984

The Centre for Continuing Education is established to provide “education, whether vocational or general, that is undertaken after an interval following the end of initial continuous education”. The work of the Centre extends to the Discussion Groups Scheme, Special Discussion courses, the Current Affairs Bulletin, radio and television programs prepared within the Centre and other external activities consistent with its main objective. It also provides administrative assistance to the University in organising courses, lectures, seminars or tutorials under the umbrella of ‘continuing education’.

2003

The operational scope of the CCE is further broadened to: make available through the provision of the Continuing Education activity, the expertise of the University of Sydney in teaching and research to the members of the community; develop a closer relationship between industry, commerce, the professions and the University, through the provision of Continuing Education activities; coordinate the Continuing Education activities of the University.

2009

The 25th Anniversary of the Centre for Continuing Education. An established provider of learning excellence to a broad range of community, corporate, and academic sectors, CCE looks towards the future with a commitment to community access to the University of Sydney and lifelong learning for all.