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The Centre for Continuing Education (CCE) in Newtown,Sydney, Australia is part of the University of Sydney and provider of continuing education to the Sydney community. Although existing in its current form since 1984, the history of the Centre for Continuing Education can be traced back to 1892, 36 years after the University's founding.
The First Extension Lectures
At its meeting in July 1892, the University of Sydney Senate accepted a recommendation from the University Extension Lectures Committee that Miss Louisa Macdonald MA deliver a course of six lectures on ‘Greek Life and Art’. Louisa Macdonald had arrived in Sydney that year to take up the post of founding Principal of the newly established Women’s College at the University, and was acknowledged as ‘a woman of considerable scholarly ability’. The Senate also approved the payment to Miss Macdonald of an honorarium of £30 ($60) for teaching the course, and agreed that the course participants pay the ‘usual fee’ of five shillings (50 cents) per ticket.
Extension Lectures at the University of Sydney had been inaugurated in 1886, thirty-six years after the University’s founding, and were based on a model then recently introduced into English universities. In general, University Extension in England was interpreted as ‘a system of lectures and classes for adults in towns away from the universities’. It was a response to a demand for university education for working men and for improved provision of higher education for women. Its purpose was not only to extend university education but also to counter criticism of the universities as too inward looking as they went through reform processes in the latter half of the 19th century.
David Stratton, film critic and recipient of honorary degree of Doctor of Letters from The University of Sydney