University of Sydney

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The University of Sydney
University of Sydney.svg
Latin: Universitas Sidneiensis
MottoLatin: Sidere mens eadem mutato
English: "Though the constellations are changed, the mind is the same" (literal)
Type Public research university
Chancellor Belinda Hutchinson
Vice-Chancellor Michael Spence
Visitor Governor of New South Wales ex officio
Administrative staff
5,350 (2015)
Students59,129 (2017) [1]
Undergraduates 34,012 (2017) [1]
Postgraduates 25,117 (2017) [1]

33°53′16″S151°11′14″E / 33.88778°S 151.18722°E / -33.88778; 151.18722
CampusUrban, parks
Colours Red, Yellow & Blue  
Affiliations Group of Eight, APRU, ASAIHL, ACU, WUN
Usyd new logo.png

The University of Sydney (USYD, Sydney or informally Sydney Uni) is an Australian public research university in Sydney, Australia. Founded in 1850, it was Australia's first university and is regarded as one of the world's leading universities. The university is colloquially known as one of Australia's sandstone universities. Its campus is ranked in the top 10 of the world's most beautiful universities by the British Daily Telegraph and The Huffington Post , spreading across the inner-city suburbs of Camperdown and Darlington. [2] [3] The university comprises 9 faculties and university schools, through which it offers bachelor, master and doctoral degrees. In 2014 it had 33,505 undergraduate and 19,284 graduate students. [1]

A public university is a university that is publicly owned or receives significant public funds through a national or subnational government, as opposed to a private university. Whether a national university is considered public varies from one country to another, largely depending on the specific education landscape.

A research university is a university that is committed to research as a central part of its mission. Such universities have a strong focus on research and often have well known names. Undergraduate courses at research universities are often academic rather than vocational and do not prepare students for particular careers, but many employers value degrees from research universities because they teach fundamental life skills such as critical thinking. Globally, research universities are predominantly public universities, with notable exceptions being the United States and Japan.

Sydney City in New South Wales, Australia

Sydney is the state capital of New South Wales and the most populous city in Australia and Oceania. Located on Australia's east coast, the metropolis surrounds Port Jackson and extends about 70 km (43.5 mi) on its periphery towards the Blue Mountains to the west, Hawkesbury to the north, the Royal National Park to the south and Macarthur to the south-west. Sydney is made up of 658 suburbs, 40 local government areas and 15 contiguous regions. Residents of the city are known as "Sydneysiders". As of June 2017, Sydney's estimated metropolitan population was 5,131,326, and is home to approximately 65% of the state's population.


In 2018-19, the QS World University Rankings ranked Sydney as the world's 25th most reputable university, and its graduates as the 4th most employable in the world and 1st in Australia. [4] [5]

QS World University Rankings is an annual publication of university rankings by Quacquarelli Symonds (QS). Previously known as Times Higher Education–QS World University Rankings, the publisher had collaborated with Times Higher Education magazine (THE) to publish its international league tables from 2004 to 2009 before both started to announce their own versions. QS then chose to continue using the pre-existing methodology while Times Higher Education adopted a new methodology to create their rankings.

Five Nobel and two Crafoord laureates have been affiliated with the university as graduates and faculty. [6] The university has educated seven Australian prime ministers, two Governors-General of Australia, nine state governors and territory administrators, and 24 justices of the High Court of Australia, including four chief justices. Sydney has produced 110 Rhodes Scholars and several Gates Scholars.

Nobel Prize set of annual international awards, primarily 5 established in 1895 by Alfred Nobel

The Nobel Prize is a set of annual international awards bestowed in several categories by Swedish and Norwegian institutions in recognition of academic, cultural, or scientific advances.

The Crafoord Prize is an annual science prize established in 1980 by Holger Crafoord, a Swedish industrialist, and his wife Anna-Greta Crafoord. The Prize is awarded in partnership between the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and the Crafoord Foundation in Lund. The Academy is responsible for selecting the Crafoord Laureates. The prize is awarded in four categories: astronomy and mathematics; geosciences; biosciences, with particular emphasis on ecology; and polyarthritis, the disease from which Holger severely suffered in his last years.

High Court of Australia supreme court

The High Court of Australia is the supreme court in the Australian court hierarchy and the final court of appeal in Australia. It has both original and appellate jurisdiction, the power of judicial review over laws passed by the Parliament of Australia and the parliaments of the states, and the ability to interpret the Constitution of Australia and thereby shape the development of federalism in Australia.

The University of Sydney is a member of the Group of Eight, CEMS, the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) and the Worldwide Universities Network.

Group of Eight (Australian universities) coalition of leading Australian tertiary institutions

The Group of Eight (Go8) is a coalition of world-leading research intensive Australian universities. The Go8 universities are some of the largest and the oldest universities in Australia and are consistently the highest ranked of all Australian universities. In 2016 all Go8 Universities were ranked in the top 150 worldwide, with six in the top 100. Go8 Universities feature in the top 100 places for every subject area in the QS world university subject rankings. All Go8 Universities are in the QS top 100 for literature, biological sciences, environmental sciences, accounting and finance, anthropology, law and education.

Global Alliance in Management Education CEMS is a global alliance of leading business schools, multinational companies and NGOs that together offer the CEMS Master’s in International Management (MIM)

CEMS - The Global Alliance in Management Education or CEMS is a cooperation of leading business schools and universities with multinational companies and NGOs. The CEMS Global Alliance includes 31 academic institutions from every continent, 71 corporate partners and 7 social partners (NGOs) from around the globe. CEMS administers delivery of the CEMS MIM degree in its member schools, supports the CEMS Alumni Association (CAA) and facilitates general cooperation among its members.

The Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU) is a consortium of 50 leading research universities in 17 economies of the Pacific Rim. Formed in 1997, APRU fosters collaboration between member universities, researchers, and policymakers contributing to economic, scientific and cultural advancement in the Pacific Rim. It is located in the IAS building at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology in Hong Kong.



The University of Sydney in the early 1870s, viewed from Parramatta Road Parramattard1870susyd.jpg
The University of Sydney in the early 1870s, viewed from Parramatta Road
The Sydney University Regiment forming a guard of honour for the visiting Duke of York, 1927 Sydney-university-regiment-duke-of-york-visit-1927.jpg
The Sydney University Regiment forming a guard of honour for the visiting Duke of York, 1927

In 1848, in the New South Wales Legislative Council, William Wentworth, a graduate of the University of Cambridge and Charles Nicholson, a medical graduate from the University of Edinburgh Medical School, proposed a plan to expand the existing Sydney College into a larger university. Wentworth argued that a state secular university was imperative for the growth of a society aspiring towards self-government, and that it would provide the opportunity for "the child of every class, to become great and useful in the destinies of his country". [7] It would take two attempts on Wentworth's behalf, however, before the plan was finally adopted.

New South Wales Legislative Council Upper house of the Parliament of New South Wales

The New South Wales Legislative Council, often referred to as the upper house, is one of the two chambers of the parliament of the Australian state of New South Wales. The other is the Legislative Assembly. Both sit at Parliament House in the state capital, Sydney. It is normal for legislation to be first deliberated on and passed by the Legislative Assembly before being considered by the Legislative Council, which acts in the main as a house of review.

William Wentworth Australian poet, explorer, journalist and politician

William Charles Wentworth was an Australian explorer, journalist, politician and author, and one of the leading figures of early colonial New South Wales. He was the first native-born Australian to achieve a reputation overseas, and a leading advocate for self-government for the Australian colonies.

University of Cambridge University in Cambridge, England, United Kingdom

The University of Cambridge is a collegiate public research university in Cambridge, United Kingdom. Founded in 1209 and granted a Royal Charter by King Henry III in 1231, Cambridge is the second-oldest university in the English-speaking world and the world's fourth-oldest surviving university. The university grew out of an association of scholars who left the University of Oxford after a dispute with the townspeople. The two 'ancient universities' share many common features and are often referred to jointly as 'Oxbridge'. The history and influence of the University of Cambridge has made it one of the most prestigious universities in the world.

The university was established via the passage of the University of Sydney Act, [8] on 24 September 1850 and was assented on 1 October 1850 by Sir Charles Fitzroy. [9] Two years later, the university was inaugurated on 11 October 1852 in the Big Schoolroom of what is now Sydney Grammar School. The first principal was John Woolley, [10] the first professor of chemistry and experimental physics was John Smith. [11] On 27 February 1858 the university received its Royal Charter from Queen Victoria, giving degrees conferred by the university rank and recognition equal to those given by universities in the United Kingdom. [12] By 1859, the university had moved to its current site in the Sydney suburb of Camperdown.

Sydney Grammar School grammar school in Sydney, Australia

Sydney Grammar School is an independent, fee-paying, non-denominational, day school for boys, located in Darlinghurst, Edgecliff and St Ives, which are all suburbs of Sydney, Australia.

John Woolley was an academic and clergyman, the first principal of the University of Sydney, Australia.

John SmithCMG was a Professor of Chemistry and Experimental Physics at the University of Sydney, and a member of the New South Wales Legislative Council.

In 1858, the passage of the electoral act provided for the university to become a constituency for the New South Wales Legislative Assembly as soon as there were 100 graduates of the university holding higher degrees eligible for candidacy. This seat in the Parliament of New South Wales was first filled in 1876, but was abolished in 1880 one year after its second member, Edmund Barton, who later became the first Prime Minister of Australia, was elected to the Legislative Assembly.

Most of the estate of John Henry Challis was bequeathed to the university, which received a sum of £200,000 in 1889. This was thanks in part due to William Montagu Manning (Chancellor 1878–95) who argued against the claims by British Tax Commissioners. The following year seven professorships were created: anatomy; zoology; engineering; history; law; logic and mental philosophy; and modern literature.

A significant figure from 1927 to 1958, termed 'Sydney's best known academic' [13] , was the Professor of Philosophy at the University John Anderson. A native of Scotland, Anderson's controversial views as a self-proclaimed Atheist and advocate of free thought in all subjects raised the ire of many, even to the point of being censured by the state parliament in 1943. [14]


The New England University College was founded as part of the University of Sydney in 1938 and later separated in 1954 to become the University of New England.

During the late 1960s, the University of Sydney was at the centre of rows to introduce courses on Marxism and feminism at the major Australian universities. At one stage, newspaper reporters descended on the university to cover brawls, demonstrations, secret memos and a walk-out by David Armstrong, a respected philosopher who held the Challis Chair of Philosophy from 1959 to 1991, after students at one of his lectures openly demanded a course on feminism. [15] The philosophy department split over the issue to become the Traditional and Modern Philosophy Department, headed by Armstrong and following a more traditional approach to philosophy, and the General Philosophy Department, which follows the French continental approach.

Under the terms of the Higher Education (Amalgamation) Act 1989 (NSW) [16] the following bodies were incorporated into the university in 1990:

Prior to 1981, the Sydney Institute of Education was the Sydney Teachers College.

The Orange Agricultural College (OAC) was originally transferred to the University of New England under the Act, but then transferred to the University of Sydney in 1994, as part of the reforms to the University of New England undertaken by the University of New England Act 1993 [17] and the Southern Cross University Act 1993. [18] In January 2005, the University of Sydney transferred the OAC to Charles Sturt University.


The Main Quadrangle in its complete form as seen today The Main Quadrangle of the University of Sydney.png
The Main Quadrangle in its complete form as seen today

In February 2007, the university agreed to acquire a portion of the land granted to St John's College to develop the Sydney Institute of Health and Medical Research, now the Charles Perkins Centre, the first new research building to be built on campus in over 40 years. As a Roman Catholic institution, in handing over the land St John's placed limitations on the type of medical research which could be conducted on the premises, seeking to preserve the essence of the college's mission. This caused concern among some groups, who argued that it would interfere with scientific medical research. However, this was rejected by the university's administration because the building was not intended for this purpose and there were many other facilities in close proximity where such research could take place.[ citation needed ].

Charles Perkins Centre, University of Sydney Charles Perkins Centre interior, Sydney.jpg
Charles Perkins Centre, University of Sydney

In 2010 the University received a rarely seen Pablo Picasso painting from the private collection of an anonymous donor. The painting, Jeune Fille Endormie , which had never been publicly seen since 1939, depicts the artist's lover, Marie-Thérèse Walter and was donated on the strict understanding that it would be sold and the proceeds directed to medical research. [19] In June 2011, the painting was auctioned at Christie's in London and sold for £13.5 million ($20.6 million AUD). The proceeds of the sale funded the establishment of many endowed professorial chairs at the yet to be constructed Charles Perkins Centre, where a room dedicated to the painting, now exists. [20]

At the start of 2010, the University controversially adopted a new logo. It retains the same university arms, however it takes on a more modern look. There have been stylistic changes, the main one being the coat of arm's mantling, the shape of the escutcheon (shield), the removal of the motto scroll, and also others more subtle within the arms itself, such as the mane and fur of the lion, the number of lines in the open book and the colouration. [21] The original Coat of Arms from 1857 continues to be used for ceremonial and other formal purposes, such as on testamurs. [22] [23]

Concerns about public funding for higher education were reflected again in 2014 following the federal government's proposal to deregulate student fees. The university held a wide-ranging consultation process, which included a "town hall meeting" at the university's Great Hall 25 August 2014, where an audience of students, staff and alumni expressed deep concern about the government's plans and called on university leadership to lobby against the proposals. [24] Spence took a leading position among Australian vice-chancellors in repeatedly calling throughout 2014 for any change to funding to not undermine equitable access to university while arguing for fee deregulation to raise course costs for the majority of higher education students. [25] [26]

In order to further enhance its competitiveness locally and internationally, the university has introduced plans to consolidate existing degrees to reduce the overall number of programs. [27]


In 2001, the University of Sydney chancellor, Dame Leonie Kramer, was forced to resign by the university's governing body. [28] In 2003, Nick Greiner, a former Premier of New South Wales, resigned from his position as chair of the university's Graduate School of Management because of academic protests against his simultaneous chairmanship of British American Tobacco (Australia). Subsequently, his wife, Kathryn Greiner, resigned in protest from the two positions she held at the university as chair of the Sydney Peace Foundation and a member of the executive council of the Research Institute for Asia and the Pacific. [29]

In 2005, the Public Service Association of New South Wales and the Community and Public Sector Union were in dispute with the university over a proposal to privatise security at the main campus (and the Cumberland campus). [30]

Action initiated by Spence to improve the financial sustainability of the university has alienated some students and staff. [31] In 2012, Spence led efforts to cut the university's expenditure to address the financial impact of a slowdown in international student enrolments across Australia. This included redundancies of a number of university staff and faculty, though some at the university argued that the institution should cut back on building programs instead. [32] Critics argue the push for savings has been driven by managerial incompetence and indifference, [31] fuelling industrial action during a round of enterprise bargaining in 2013 that also reflected widespread concerns about public funding for higher education. [33]

An internal staff survey in 2012/13, which found widespread dissatisfaction with how the university is being managed. [34] Asked to rate their level of agreement with a series of statements about the university, 19 per cent of those surveyed believed "change and innovation" were handled well by the university. In the survey, 75 per cent of university staff indicated senior executives were not listening to them, while only 22 per cent said change was handled well and 33 per cent said senior executives were good role models. [35]

In the first week of semester, some staff passed a motion of no confidence in Spence because of concerns he was pushing staff to improve the budget while he received a performance bonus of $155,000 that took his total pay to $1 million, in the top 0.1 per cent of income earners in Australia. [36] Fairfax media reports Spence and other Uni bosses have salary packages worth ten times more than staff salaries and double that of the Prime Minister. [37]

During Spence's term, the university community was divided over allowing students from an elite private school, Scots College, to enter university via a "pathway of privilege" by means of enrolling in a Diploma of Tertiary Preparation rather than meeting HSC entry requirements. [38] The university charged students $12,000 to take the course and have since successfully admitted a number of students to degree courses. An exposé by Fairfax media which turned out to be based on a misunderstanding as to VET and UAC matriculation standards, the scheme has been criticised by Phillip Heath, the national chairman of the Association of Heads of independent schools of Australia. [39] Heath later withdrew the statement, indicating that he had been taken out of context, confirming in a letter circulated to Scots parents that "the Diploma of Tertiary Preparation at Scots is clearly not a "sweetheart deal" as has been reported".

An investigation by Fairfax Media in 2015 revealed widespread cheating at universities across NSW, including the University of Sydney. [40] The university established a taskforce on academic misconduct in April 2015 to maintain its leadership position in preventing incidences of cheating and academic misconduct. [41]

A 2016 investigation by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation exposed corporate deals between the Veterinary Faculty and large pet food companies had resulted in the withholding of harmful cat food product tested to protect corporate sponsors. [42]


Main campus

The MacLaurin Hall McLaurin Hall, University of Sydney.JPG
The MacLaurin Hall

The main campus has been ranked in the top 10 of the world's most beautiful universities by the British Daily Telegraph , and The Huffington Post , among others such as Oxford and Cambridge and is spread across the inner-city suburbs of Camperdown and Darlington. [2] [3]

The interior of the Main Quadrangle Southern Range Southern Range of the University of Sydney Main Quadrangle.jpg
The interior of the Main Quadrangle Southern Range

Originally housed in what is now Sydney Grammar School, in 1855 the government granted land in Grose Farm to the university, three kilometres from the city, which is now the main Camperdown campus. The architect Edmund Blacket designed the original Neo-Gothic sandstone Quadrangle and Great Tower buildings, which were completed in 1862. The rapid expansion of the university in the mid-20th century resulted in the acquisition of land in Darlington across City Road. The Camperdown/Darlington campus houses the university's administrative headquarters, and the Faculties of Arts, Science, Education and Social Work, Pharmacy, Veterinary Science, Economics and Business, Architecture, and Engineering. It is also the home base of the large Sydney Medical School, which has numerous affiliated teaching hospitals across the state.

Former jacaranda tree in the main quadrangle Inside Quadrangle Cloisters, University of Sydney.JPG
Former jacaranda tree in the main quadrangle

The main campus is also the focus of the university's student life, with the student-run University of Sydney Union (known as "the Union") in possession of three buildings – Wentworth, Manning and Holme Buildings. These buildings house a large proportion of the university's catering outlets, and provide space for recreational rooms, bars and function centres. One of the largest activities organised by the Union is the Orientation Week (or 'O-week'), centring on stalls set up by clubs and societies on the Front Lawns.

The main campus is home to a variety of statues, artworks, and monuments. These include the Gilgamesh Statue and the Confucius Statue.

As of 2016 the university is undertaking a large capital works program with the aim of revitalising the campus and providing more office, teaching and student space. [43] The program will see the amalgamation of the smaller science and technical libraries into a larger library, and the construction of a central administration and student services building along City Road. A new building for the School of Information Technologies opened in late 2006 and has been located on a site adjacent to the Seymour Centre. The busy Eastern Avenue thoroughfare has been transformed into a pedestrian plaza and a new footbridge has been built over City Road. The new home for the Sydney Law School, located alongside Fisher Library on the site of the old Edgeworth David and Stephen Roberts buildings, has been completed. The university has opened a new building called "Abercrombie building" for business school students in early 2016.

The NSW state government has reduced transport links to the old campus and the closest Redfern railway station leaving main access to buses on the neighbouring Parramatta Road and City Road, prioritising the growth at other Sydney universities. [44]

From 2007, the university has used space in the former Eveleigh railway yards, just to the south of Darlington, for examination purposes.

Satellite campuses

The Great Tower (completed 1862) is on the eastern side of the Main Quadrangle Usyd Clock Tower.jpg
The Great Tower (completed 1862) is on the eastern side of the Main Quadrangle

The university also uses a number of other facilities for its teaching activities.


The University of Sydney Library consists of 11 individual libraries located across the university's various campuses. The Fisher and Health sciences libraries offer disability support services. [45] According to the library's publications, it is the largest academic library in the southern hemisphere; [46] university statistics show that in 2007 the collection consisted of just under 5 million physical volumes and a further 300,000 e-books, for a total of approximately 5.3 million items. [47] The Rare Books Library possesses several extremely rare items, including one of the two extant copies of the Gospel of Barnabas and a first edition of Isaac Newton's Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica .

Lake Northam in Victoria Park The University of Sydney Lake Northam 2013.jpg
Lake Northam in Victoria Park

Centre for Continuing Education

The Centre for Continuing Education is an adult education provider within the university. Extension lectures at the university were inaugurated in 1886, [48] 36 years after the university's founding, making it Australia's longest running university continuing education program. [49]

Museums and galleries

Nicholson Museum - Joy of Museum Nicholson Museum - Joy of Museum.jpg
Nicholson Museum - Joy of Museum

Halls of Residence & Residential Colleges

St John's College St Johns College U Sydney.jpg
St John's College
Quadrangle of Sancta Sophia College Sancta Quad 2007.jpg
Quadrangle of Sancta Sophia College
Wesley College SydneyUniversity WesleyCollege.jpg
Wesley College
St Andrew's College Camperdown St Andrews College.JPG
St Andrew's College

The university has a number of halls of residence (based on research-lead living-learning principles) and residential colleges, each with its own distinctive style and facilities. All offer a wide range of cultural, social, sporting and leadership activities along with targeted academic support in a supportive communal environment. The Halls of Residence are owned and operated by the University Accommodation Service. [51] Starting in 2013, the University committed to creating the Halls of Residence (an additional 4,000-6,000 residential places) at an affordable price to enhance the educational experience of living on campus and to offer more students a rich academic environment in which to live. [52]

The University Student Accommodation Service were awarded the Asia-Pacific Student Housing Operation of the Year & Excellence in Facility Development and Management [54] in 2016.

The Student Accommodation Service and the Mana Yura Student Support Service were the first in Australia to implement an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander On-Campus Residence Halls Scholarship Guarantee. [52]

Additionally, the University owns and operates International House.

Affiliated with the University are six religiously denominated colleges. Unlike some residential colleges in British or American universities, the colleges are not affiliated with any specific discipline of study.

There is a university-affiliated housing cooperative, Stucco.

The college also publishes a peer-reviewed online journal, Philament, [55] that focuses on work by postgraduate students including creative stories. [56] the journal is supported by an advisory board of faculty members, and is registered by the Australian Commonwealth Department of Education Science and Training (DEST).


The university comprises 6 Faculties and 3 University Schools: [57]

The five largest faculties and schools by 2011 student enrolments were (in descending order): Arts and Social Sciences; Business; Science; Engineering and Information Technologies; Health Sciences. Together they constituted 64.4% of the university's students and each had a student enrolment over 4,500 (at least 9% of students). [58]

The Main Quadrangle of the University of Sydney SydneyUniversity MainBuilding Panorama.jpg
The Main Quadrangle of the University of Sydney

Academic profile


University rankings
University of Sydney
QS World [59] 42
THE-WUR World [60] 59
ARWU World [61] 68
USNWR World [62] 31
CWTS Leiden World [63] 30
Australian rankings
QS National [59] 3
THE-WUR National [64] 3
ARWU National [65] 3
USNWR National [66] 2
CWTS Leiden National [63] 1
ERA National [67] 2 [68]
The Anderson Stuart Building, housing the Sydney Medical School Anderson Stuart Building Sydney Uni.JPG
The Anderson Stuart Building, housing the Sydney Medical School
The Macleay Building housing the Macleay Museum, the oldest collection of natural history in Australia Macleay Building and Museum, University of Sydney.jpg
The Macleay Building housing the Macleay Museum, the oldest collection of natural history in Australia
The Madsen Building, housing the School of Geosciences, previously occupied by the CSIRO University of Sydney Madsen Building.png
The Madsen Building, housing the School of Geosciences, previously occupied by the CSIRO

The 2019 QS World University Rankings ranked the University of Sydney 42nd in the world, third nationally and top-ranked university in New South Wales. It is ranked 25th in the world by academic reputation. [69] By Subject, QS ranked the University of Sydney in the top 50 across all five broad subject areas. [70]

Additionally, Sydney is ranked 2nd in Sports-related Subjects, 10th in Anatomy & Physiology, 11th in Veterinary Science, 12th in Education, 14th in Law and Legal Studies, 15th in Nursing, 16th in Architecture, 18th in Accounting and Finance, 18th in English Language and Literature, 18th in Medicine and 18th in Pharmacy and Pharmacology.

The 2018 QS Graduate Employability Rankings ranked University of Sydney graduates 4th most employable in the world, 1st in Australia, and 2nd in the Asia Pacific region. [71] In 2012, a human resources consultancy in Paris conducted a survey of recruiters in 20 countries and ranked Sydney as 49th in the world for employability. [72]

The Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2019 ranked the University of Sydney 59th in the world and 3rd in Australia, ahead of UNSW at 96th and 5th respectively. [73]

By subject area, the University of Sydney is ranked:

The Times Higher Education World Reputation Rankings 2017 ranked Sydney as 61st-70th most reputable in the world. [74]

The 2018 US News & World Report's Best Global Universities ranking placed Sydney 34th in the world and 2nd in Australasia. [75]

In the 2018 Shanghai Ranking published by the Shanghai Ranking Consultancy, the University of Sydney was ranked in the 68th and in the top 0.6% of universities in the world. [76] Sydney is ranked 1st in Australia and 29th overall in the 2017 CWTS Leiden Rankings for research impact. [77] Additionally,

In the Performance Ranking of Scientific Papers for World Universities 2015 by National Taiwan University, Sydney is ranked 36th in the world, 3rd in the Asia Pacific and 2nd in Australia. [78]

In terms of alumni wealth, the number of wealthy Sydney alumni was ranked fifth outside the United States, behind Oxford, Mumbai, Cambridge and LSE according to the ABC NEWS. [79] Business magazine Spear's placed the University of Sydney 44th in the world and 2nd in Australia in its table of "World's top 100 universities for producing millionaires". [80]

Endowments and research grants

The university has received a number of significant bequests and legacies over its history. The following are current professorships ("chairs"), funds and fellowships which are funded by bequests and legacies and named after benefactors:

Coat of arms

Arms used in the University of Sydney logo, pre-2010 University of Sydney.svg
Arms used in the University of Sydney logo, pre-2010

The Grant of Arms was made by the College of Arms in 1857. The grant reads:

Argent on a Cross Azure an open book proper, clasps Gold, between four Stars of eight points Or, on a chief Gules a Lion passant Guardant also Or, together with this motto "Sidere mens eadem mutato" to be borne and used forever herafter by the said University of Sydney on their Common Seal, Shields or otherwise according to the Law of Arms.

The use of eight-pointed stars was unusual for arms at the time, although they had been used unofficially as emblems for New South Wales since the 1820s and on the arms of the Church of England Diocese of Australia in 1836. [87]

According to the university, the Latin motto Sidere mens eadem mutato can be translated to "the stars change, the mind remains the same." [88] Francis Merewether, later Vice Provost, in 1857 proposed "Coelum non animum mutant" from Horace (Ep.1.11.27) but after objections changed it to a metrical version including "Sidus" (Star), a neat reference to the Southern Cross and perhaps the Sydney family link with Sir Philip Sidney's "Astrophel (Star-Lover) & Stella (Star)". [89] Author and university alumnus Clive James quipped in his 1981 autobiography that the motto loosely implies "Sydney University is really Oxford or Cambridge laterally displaced approximately 12,000 miles." [90]

Student organisations

Orientation Week at University Place Usydoweek.jpg
Orientation Week at University Place

The SRC and Union are both governed by student representatives, who are elected by students each year. Elections for the USU board of directors occur in first semester; elections for the SRC President, and for members of the Students' Representative Council itself, occur in second semester, along with a separate election for the editorial board of the student newspaper Honi Soit , which is published by the SRC. The elections are usually closely contested, and result in much of the main campus being covered with chalk messages from the various candidates.

Notable alumni

University of Sydney alumni have made significant contributions to Australia and the world.

Notable alumni of Sydney include seven Prime Ministers, the most of any university, three Chief Justices of the High Court, four Federal Opposition Leaders, two Governors-General, nine Federal Attorneys-General, and 24 Justices of the High Court—more than any other law school in Australia. The faculty has also produced 24 Rhodes Scholars and several Gates Scholars. Internationally, alumni of Sydney Law School include the third President of the United Nations General Assembly and a President of the International Court of Justice (in each case, the only Australians to date to hold such positions).

The University of Sydney is associated with five Nobel laureates: in chemistry John Cornforth (alumnus; the only Nobel Laureate born in New South Wales) and Robert Robinson (staff); in economics, John Harsanyi (alumnus); and in physiology or medicine, John Eccles and Bernard Katz (both staff).

The School of Physics has played an important role in the development of radio astronomy in particular: [91] Ruby Payne-Scott conducted the first interferometric observations in radio astronomy with the sea-cliff interferometer at Dover Heights; alumnus Ron Bracewell proposed the nulling interferometer to image extrasolar planets, made contributions to the theory of the Fourier Transform and X-ray tomography, and proposed the idea of the Bracewell probe in SETI; and alumnus Bernard Mills led the construction of the Mills Cross Telescope and Molonglo Observatory Synthesis Telescope in the ACT. School of Physics alumnus and Crafoord Laureate Edwin Salpeter discovered the form of the initial mass function of stars, the importance of beryllium-8 in stellar nuclear fusion, and independently with Yakov Zel'dovich proposed the black hole accretion disk model of active galactic nuclei. The Apollo 14 Mission Scientist Philip K. Chapman and the first Australian-born astronaut to fly in space Paul Scully-Power are both alumni of the University. Chaos theory pioneer and Crafoord Laureate Robert May is an alumnus of and former Professor at the School of Physics, best known for his exploration of the logistic map bifurcations.

In the performing arts, notable alumni include soprano Joan Sutherland; Shakespearean actor John Bell actor, producer and director Dolph Lundgren; and Sri Lankan born Indian actress Jacqueline Fernandez.

Student well-being

Reports of on-campus sexual assault and harassment

A quarter of the university's female students residing in university colleges have been found to face sexual harassment. [92] Between 2011 and 2016 there were 52 officially reported cases of sexual abuse and harassment on campus released by the university, resulting in 1 expulsion, 1 suspension and 4 reprimands. [93] This is less than the 2017 Australian Human Rights Commission report on sexual assault and harassment which found reported figures substantially higher than this. [94] 71% of students surveyed in 2017 reported not knowing how to make a report relating to sexual assault or harassment. Imogen Grant from the SRC said students who had experienced sexual assault had come forward believing that "navigating the university bureaucracy exacerbates trauma and often seems futile". [95] Previously a 2015 survey of 2000 USyd students found that 57 per cent of respondents did not know where to seek help or how to report sexual misconduct at USyd, and only 1.4% of all serious sexual incidents are reported. [96] After the release of the 2017 report the vice-chancellor said the university was committed to implementing "all of the recommendations contained in the report". [95] Graphic videos emerged in 2018 of male students bragging of their sexual feats over the female students, particularly first-years. [97]

See also

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