Victoria University, Melbourne

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Victoria University
Victoria University Melb Aus Logo Master K reduced.jpg
Former names
Footscray Technical School (1916–1958)
Footscray Technical College (1958–1968)
Footscray Institute of Technology (1968–1990)
Victoria University of Technology (1990–2005)
TypePublic university
Established1916; 107 years ago (1916)
1990; 33 years ago (1990) (university status)
ChancellorSteve Bracks
Vice-ChancellorAdam Shoemaker
Students28,412 (2019)[1]
Other students
15,390 (2019)[1]

Victoria University (VU or Vic Uni) is a public research university based in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. It is a dual-sector university, providing courses in both higher education and technical and further education (TAFE).

The university has several campuses in Melbourne Central Business District, Melbourne Western Region, and in Sydney, comprising six academic colleges, six research institutes, seven research centres and VU's Victoria Polytechnic.


The idea for a technical school based in the western suburbs of Melbourne was first proposed in 1910. The Footscray Technical School opened its doors to 220 students and 9 teachers in 1916 after five years of fundraising.

Charles Archibald Hoadley was the school's principal from its founding until his death in 1947.[2] Under Hoadley's leadership, the school expanded and began offering trade certificate courses, diplomas in architecture, building, and contracting, as well as evening classes. War and the Depression saw a dip in student numbers. However, by 1943, there were 2500 students enrolled in courses taught at the Footscray Park and Footscray Nicholson campuses.

The following decades saw gender and cultural shifts. In 1958, the school changed its name to the Footscray Technical College. Ten years later, it changed its name again, this time, to the Footscray Institute of Technology (FIT). Women first enrolled in day diploma courses in 1960, and changes to the federal government's immigration policy resulted in many more European and Asian students entering the school. The secondary school component, now known as Footscray City College, was separated from the rest of the institute in 1972. By the mid-1970s, the expanded curriculum included degree courses and was well beyond the technical focus of the original Footscray Technical School. Further changes occurred in the 1980s, with the technical and trade education section separating from FIT to form the Footscray and Newport Colleges of TAFE.

In 1990, FIT merged with the Western Institute, which had been founded three years earlier to provide TAFE and higher education courses to the outlying suburbs in western Melbourne. In 1990, it was established as a university by the Victoria State Parliament as Victoria University of Technology.[3] The university further amalgamation with the Western Melbourne Institute of TAFE in 1998. In 2005, the Victoria University of Technology Act of 1990 was amended[4] to rename the university as Victoria University, reflecting the development of its teaching and research.

The institutions that combined to form VU include:

  • Footscray Technical School, renamed Footscray Technical College and later Footscray Institute of Technology
  • Newport Technical College, renamed Newport College of TAFE
  • Melbourne School of Hairdressing
  • School of Painting, Decorating and Sign Crafts
  • Melbourne Technical College of Hairdressing
  • Melbourne College of Decoration
  • Footscray College of TAFE
  • Flagstaff College of TAFE
  • Western Institute
  • Gellibrand College of TAFE, renamed Western Metropolitan College of TAFE
  • Western Melbourne Institute of TAFE
  • Victoria University of Technology
  • Victoria Polytechnic


Victoria University has campuses located throughout Melbourne's western region and the city centre. The new VU City Tower will be Melbourne's tallest vertical campus, and is due for completion in 2021.[5] One campus is located in central Sydney.

VU courses are also delivered by partner institutes throughout Asia, including in China, India, Malaysia, and Sri Lanka. Two of the university's largest partners are Sunway University College in Malaysia and Liaoning University in China.

Footscray Park[edit]

Victoria University Footscray Park Campus – Building P

Footscray Park Campus on Ballarat Road, Footscray is the university's main campus and administrative centre. It offers higher education courses primarily in engineering, education and sport-related disciplines. It occupies a 7-hectare (17-acre) site overlooking Flemington Racecourse and the Maribyrnong River. A A$68.5 million sport and learning precinct, including sport and exercise science research labs, was completed in early 2011. The campus also has a 25-metre swimming pool and a childcare centre.[6]

St Albans[edit]

St Albans VU Campus

St Albans Campus on McKecknie Street, St Albans, is the university's health and education hub, with a focus on psychology, nursing, arts, and paramedic and biomedical sciences. It is set on 32 hectares (79 acres) of native grasslands and sugar gums. The new St Albans Health and Fitness Centre was opened in 2013.[7]

Footscray Nicholson[edit]

Victoria University Footscray Nicholson Campus – Building T as viewed from Buckley Street

Footscray Nicholson Campus is in central Footscray, on the corner of Nicholson and Buckley Streets. It delivers TAFE, VCE and short courses. Its new learning commons was opened in 2012 offering a broad range of educational and student services.[8]

City King[edit]

City King Campus is now closed. All Victoria University courses delivered in Melbourne's CBD are run through the VU City Campus which consists of the Queen Street Building and the new VU City Tower building, opened in 2022.

The City King Campus is located in a high-rise building close to Southern Cross station. It provides health and beauty courses, and includes a hair and beauty salon that is open to the public.[9]

City Queen[edit]

Victoria University City Campus on Queen Street

The City Queen Campus occupies two heritage buildings at 283 and 295 Queen Street in the heart of Melbourne's legal precinct. The campus houses the university's College of Law and Justice, a law library, the Sir Zelman Cowen Centre and two moot courts. It offers undergraduate and postgraduate law courses, including continuing legal education courses for legal professionals.[10][11]


VU Weribee Campus

The 16-hectare (40-acre) Werribee Campus is located in the Werribee agricultural research and tertiary education precinct. It offers trades training as well as facilities for water, food and fire safety research.[12]


The Sunshine Campus of Victoria Polytechnic is located on Ballarat Road, Sunshine. It offers TAFE courses, focusing mainly on business and the construction industries.[13] The A$44 million high-technology Construction Hub was opened in 2013 for building and construction training. The campus also has a convention centre with a 200-seat auditorium.


Victoria University delivers a number of business courses for international students at its campus in central Sydney,[14] which operates in partnership with the Education Centre of Australia (ECA).[15]

Whitten Oval[edit]

In late 2010, VU opened an A$8 million Sport and Recreation Learning Centre in partnership with the Western Bulldogs at the Whitten Oval in West Footscray.[16] The Centre contains massage therapy clinics open to the public, as well as a 140-seat lecture theatre, a library, classrooms and offices.


Several of the university's colleges offer internationally recognised qualifications ranging from certificates and diplomas to degrees, postgraduate certificates and diplomas, and masters and doctoral research degrees (PhD). Victoria Polytechnic and VU College offer vocational education courses and higher education diplomas. These are divided between several colleges, including:

  • The College of Arts and Education
  • The College of Business
  • The College of Engineering and Science
  • The College of Health and Bio-medicine
  • The College of Law and Justice
  • The College of Sport and Exercise Science
  • Victoria University Polytechnic, which is the TAFE division of Victoria University.


In 2019, VU had 43,802 students.[1] Approximately 65% student in higher education degree programs, and 35% enrolled in TAFE training courses. Of these students, 5,662 were international students studying at one of VU's Melbourne or Sydney Campuses, and 3,772 were international students studying at VU programs overseas at one of its partner organisations located mainly in Asia.[1]



Victoria University ranked in 351–400 in the world in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2021.

University rankings
Victoria University, Australia
QS World[17]551-560
THE World[18]351-400
ARWU World[19]901-1000
US News World[20]543=
Australian rankings
QS National[17]27
THE National[21]25-27
ARWU National[22]32-34
US News National[23]25
ERA National[25]29[24]

28 VU research disciplines were ranked at or above world standard in the Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) assessments 2018.[26]

Student accommodation[edit]

VU owns and operates student accommodation for students, staff, and guests of the university.[27] In February 2016, the Student Village in Maidstone was replaced with the newly built UniLodge Victoria University, a 13-story apartment building across the road from the Footscray Park Campus on Ballarat Road, Footscray.

International House, a traditional residential college located at the University of Melbourne, also offers places to Victoria University students.

Notable people[edit]



See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d "Victoria University 2019 Annual Report" (PDF). VU. Archived (PDF) from the original on 9 December 2020. Retrieved 24 February 2021.
  2. ^ Limmer, Scott (17 July 2013). "Charles Archibald HOADLEY (1887-1947)". Retrieved 29 January 2023.
  3. ^ "Victoria University of Technology Act 1990". Parliament of Victoria. Archived from the original on 11 November 2013. Retrieved 11 November 2013.
  4. ^ "Victoria University of Technology Act 2010 preamble". Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 7 July 2014.
  5. ^ "Probuild | Projects - Victoria University City West Tower". Archived from the original on 9 August 2021. Retrieved 9 August 2021.
  6. ^ "Footscray Park Aquatic & Fitness Centre". Victoria University – Melbourne Australia. Archived from the original on 2 February 2017. Retrieved 24 January 2017.
  7. ^ "VU's new sports centre brings a world of fitness to the west" (Press release). VU. 21 February 2013. Archived from the original on 12 November 2013. Retrieved 7 March 2013.
  8. ^ "New learning commons at Footscray Nicholson Campus | Victoria University | Melbourne Australia". Archived from the original on 16 January 2017. Retrieved 15 January 2017.
  9. ^ "City King campus | Victoria University | Melbourne Australia". Archived from the original on 10 April 2017. Retrieved 10 April 2017.
  10. ^ "Study at VU: Law & Justice courses". Victoria University. Archived from the original on 26 March 2018. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  11. ^ "About VU: What you can support". Victoria University. Archived from the original on 23 March 2018. Retrieved 5 May 2018.
  12. ^ "Werribee Campus". Victoria University. Archived from the original on 12 June 2018. Retrieved 6 June 2018.
  13. ^ "Tour Victoria University's new Trades College building at Sunshine" (Press release). VU. 24 January 2013. Archived from the original on 12 November 2013. Retrieved 7 March 2013.
  14. ^[0]=field_cricos_code%3AVU%20Sydney Archived 22 August 2022 at the Wayback Machine[bare URL]
  15. ^ "About VU Sydney – Victoria University – Sydney Australia". Archived from the original on 8 January 2017. Retrieved 1 February 2017.
  16. ^ "Victoria University unveils its new teaching facilities in a bright new kennel" (Press release). VU. 17 August 2010. Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 7 March 2013.
  17. ^ a b "QS World University Rankings 2023". Quacquarelli Symonds Limited.
  18. ^ "World University Rankings 2023". Times Higher Education.
  19. ^ "Academic Ranking of World Universities 2022". Shanghai Ranking Consultancy.
  20. ^ "U.S. News & World Report Best Global Universities Rankings". U.S. News & World Report.
  21. ^ "THE 2023 - Australia". Times Higher Education.
  22. ^ "Academic Ranking of World Universities 2021". Shanghai Ranking Consultancy.
  23. ^ "U.S. News & World Report Best Global Universities in Australia". U.S. News & World Report.
  24. ^ "All unis winners in research audit". The Australian. 4 December 2015. Archived from the original on 31 December 2016. Retrieved 21 February 2017.
  25. ^ "Australian University Rankings". Australian Education Network.
  26. ^ "VU research judged as world-class, grows in new ratings". Archived from the original on 20 January 2021. Retrieved 24 February 2021.
  27. ^ "Housing & accommodation – Victoria University – Melbourne Australia". Archived from the original on 29 December 2011. Retrieved 30 December 2011.
  28. ^ "Community champion – Victoria University – Melbourne Australia". Archived from the original on 29 March 2018. Retrieved 4 April 2018.

Further reading[edit]

  • Rasmussen, Carolyn (1989), Poor Man's University: 75 years of Technical Education in Footscray, Melbourne: The Press of the Footscray Institute of Technology ISBN 1-86297-000-9
  • 90 Years, 90 Legends (2006), Melbourne: Published by Victoria University ISBN 1-86272-665-5

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 37°47′39″S 144°54′0″E / 37.79417°S 144.90000°E / -37.79417; 144.90000