Australian Defence College
- the Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies (CDSS),
- the Australian Command and Staff College (ACSC) (both located at Weston Creek), and
- the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA).
The ADC is headed by a two-star officer, currently Major General Simone Wilkie. Each of the educational organisations is headed by a one-star officer, or civilian of equivalent status, titled Commandant / Principal of their organisation.
Officers from other countries are sponsored to attend the courses offered at each organisation. Typically these people are paired with Defence 'foster' families in Canberra who can offer guidance and support during the visitor's stay.
The first two organisations are sited at a campus at Weston, ACT. This campus has been sold to private hands and leased back by Defence.
Both campuses maintain extensive libraries.
History of College
The current Australian Defence College has its origins in the report of the Defence Efficiency Review that was issued in May 1997. The report recommended sweeping changes to officer education in the Australian Defence Force.
The ADC was officially opened on 18 January 1999 by the Hon Bruce Scott MP, Minister Assisting the Minister of Defence. The founding Commander of the ADC was Rear Admiral Raydon Gates CSM, RAN.
The first two courses that were run at the ADC in 1999 were the Defence Staff Course (DSC) and the Defence and Strategic Studies Course (DSSC). In 2000 these two courses were merged to form one course, the Defence and Strategic Studies Course, which is run by the Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies (CDSS).
On 14 March 2001 the then Governor–General, Sir William Deane, commemorated the establishment of the ADC, and officially opened the Australian Command and Staff College (ACSC). Prior to the establishment of the ACSC, middle management officer Command and Staff training was conducted at separate single Service staff colleges:
- the Army Command and Staff Course was conducted at Fort Queenscliff in Victoria;
- the RAAF Staff Course at RAAF Fairbairn in the Australian Capital Territory; and
- the RAN Staff Course at HMAS Penguin in Sydney, New South Wales.
On 1 October 2007 the Australian Defence Force Warfare Centre (ADFWC) and the Australian Defence College merged under command of the Commander ADC, as part of the Vice Chief of the Defence Force Group.
They are now under the Commander, Joint Education, Training and Warfare.
|Commander, Australian Defence College|
|Commander||Term began||Term ended|
|Rear Admiral Raydon Gates CSM, RAN||18 January 1999||21 August 2002|
|Major General Jim Molan AO||22 August 2002||April 2004|
|Rear Admiral Mark Bonser AO, CSC, RAN||3 May 2004||15 January 2006|
|Major General David Morrison AM||16 January 2006||2 April 2007|
|Brigadier Brian Dawson AM, CSC (Acting)||3 April 2007||2 August 2007|
|Rear Admiral Davyd Thomas AO, CSC, RAN||August 2007||January 2008|
|Commander Joint Education, Training and Warfare|
|Rear Admiral Davyd Thomas AO, CSC, RAN||January 2008||May 2008|
|Rear Admiral James Goldrick AO, CSC, RAN||May 2008||2012|
|Major General Craig Orme AO, CSC||2012||July 2013|
|Major General Simone Wilkie AO||July 2013|
Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies (CDSS)
- "Joint Services Staff College" is also the former name of the British Joint Service Defence College
The Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies (CDSS) – formerly known as the Australian College of Defence and Strategic Studies, and the Joint Services Staff College – opened in January 2001 as part of the reorganised Australian Defence College. The CDSS is intended for senior Service and civilian officers of mainly Colonel (equiv) rank.
The main course is an intensive Defence and Strategic Studies Course (DSSC), primarily using study modules from various Australian universities. The DSSC is intended to give officers of the Australian Defence Force, the Australian Public Service and overseas participants with the knowledge and skills required by senior leaders and managers operating in the national security environment. The DSSC concentrates on the Asia-Pacific region. The interconnected thematic core curriculum blocks that are:
- Development of Strategic Thought;
- Command, Strategic Leadership and Management;
- The Contemporary Strategic Setting;
- Future Strategic Settings;
- Australian Strategic policy – Past, Present and Future; and
- Higher Command and Staff Studies.
Successful completion of this course is considered necessary for promotion to Brigadier (equiv) rank in the Australian Defence Force.
Distinguished Guest lecturers are used to give the course a practical context. Visiting Fellows include prominent academics from overseas.
The following is a list of the Principals, Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies.
|Principal||Term began||Term ended|
|Paul Varsanyi||18 January 1999||5 January 2005|
|Myra Rowling||6 January 2005||8 December 2005|
|Maurice Hermann||5 January 2006||3 December 2006|
|Dr Alan Ryan||4 December 2006|
Australian Command and Staff College (ACSC)
The Australian Command and Staff College (ACSC) conducts courses intended to prepare field ranking officers (Major / Lieutenant Commander / Squadron Leader) and their Defence civilian equivalent for staff duties and subsequent promotion to command positions. Courses conducted are the:
Other courses are preparations for these:
- Overseas Course Member Orientation Period (OCMOP)
- ACSC Course Member Orientation Week
- Defence International Training Centre
- Australian Defence Force Peace Operations Training Centre Course
- Directing Staff Development Course (DSDP).
The following is a list of the Commanders, Australian Command and Staff College.
|Commander||Term began||Term ended|
|Air Commodore Peter McDermott AM, CSC||14 March 2001||19 December 2002|
|Commodore Campbell "Cam" Darby AM, RAN||20 December 2002||January 2005|
|Brigadier Michael Clifford CSC||January 2005||14 July 2005|
|Brigadier Wayne Bowen SC, AM||15 July 2005||18 September 2006|
|Brigadier Chris Appleton CSC||20 February 2007||14 December 2007|
|Captain Richard McMillan CSC, RAN (acting)||15 December 2007||March 2008|
|Brigadier Barry McManus CSC||March 2008||January 2009|
|Brigadier Wayne Goodman AM||January 2009||May 2010|
|Commodore Richard Menhinick AM, CSC, RAN||May 2010||2012|
|Brigadier Peter Gates AM, CSM||2012||Present|
At about 4.15pm on 30 January 2006, part of the roof collapsed into the staff offices on the second floor used by the ACSC at the Geddes building. Several staff had minor injuries. Classes were moved to the ADFA campus while restoration work was completed.
Australian Defence Force Academy
ADFA is operated as a campus of the University of New South Wales (UNSW) and has academic and support staff employed by the university. Military staff maintain a separate training program in non-academic time.
Current Commandant: Air Commodore Alan Clements
Rector: Professor Michael Frater
References and notes
- The History of the Australian Command and Staff College, Australia Defence College website. This page also contains: RAAF Staff College History; RAN Staff Course History; and History of the Army Staff College.
- Australian Defence College
- Centre for Defence & Strategic Studies
- Australian Command & Staff College
- Australian Defence Force Academy
- History of the College