Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

About the School

The School of Agricultural and Wine Sciences has a long and proud history dating back to 1892, and now we are the largest and most successful provider of agricultural, horticultural and wine science education supporting rural industries in Australia.

With operations at both Wagga Wagga in southern NSW and Orange in central NSW our team comprises 70 academic, research, technical and administration staff. We host some 1,200 undergraduate students and over 60 post-graduate students in our comprehensive suite of undergraduate, post-graduate and professional development courses.

These courses cover the fields of Agriculture and Agricultural Science, Agricultural Business Management, Wine Science, Viticulture, Wine Business, Science, and Horticulture. Post-graduate courses include Honours, Graduate Certificates, Graduate Diplomas, Masters, and Doctorates in relevant to the interests of students. In many courses, flexible study options on-campus or by distance education are available.

Our Teaching and Research Strengths

Our teaching and research strengths include:

  • Bioprotection (entomology, plant pathology, weeds)
  • Pastures and pasture/animal interactions
  • Crop agronomy
  • Hydrology, irrigation and water management
  • Soils, soil-plant-water interactions, plant growth
  • Herbicide resistance and allelopathy
  • Wine science, Viticulture
  • Farming systems
  • Chemistry
  • Economics
  • Rural sociology

Research is undertaken through key CSU Research Centre's such as the Graham Centre for Agricultural Innovation (an alliance between Charles Sturt University and the NSW Department of Primary Industries); the CSU Institute for Land Water and Society, the National Wine & Grape Industry Centre, the International Centre for Water, and the Centre for Inland Health. In addition, staff from the School have major involvement in national Cooperative Research Centre's which link universities, government bodies and industry organisations across Australia to focus on national sector-wide issues. For these, funding from government, industry and research providers supports  research, education and extension. SAWS contributes strongly to:

  • The CRC for Future Farm Industries
  • The CRC for National Plant Biosecurity
  • The CRC for Irrigation
  • The CRC for Cotton Catchment Communities

Partners in Education and Research

Many industry, government and other organisations join with us to ensure the best education and research impacts possible. Their strong support and commitment to the future of education and research is very much appreciated.

These linkages ensure our courses remain relevant and topical, and that we are developing in students skills that employers value, and that we producing graduates who will make an impact within their profession. Because of our close association with industry and business, we are able to offer a number of scholarships.

These partnerships also mean that the research we undertake is applied and focused on key problems affecting Australia and the world.

Regional Engagement and Professional Activities

As a School we are proud to also contribute to regional communities through our professional activities. These include things such as:

  • Contribution to primary and secondary school education
  • Regional, national and international conferences
  • Involvement in community organisations
  • Short courses and training workshops
  • Collaborative research and extension
  • Consultancies

Teaching and Research Facilities

CSU's School of Agricultural and Wine Sciences is located in the heart of agriculture in some of the most productive regions of south-eastern Australia. As well as the rich resources in the region, our students have access to some of Australia's best agricultural teaching and research facilities for practical experience, including:

  • extensive and diverse farming facilities on a university farm, incorporating precision agriculture technologies
  • access to the university sheep and cattle herds and animal handling facilities
  • the most sophisticated underground root growth laboratory (rhizolysimeter) in the southern hemisphere
  • access to a range of mixed farms and agricultural research institutions
  • five state-of-the-art laboratories and modern glasshouse facilities
  • extensive computer facilities
  • working models of a full range of irrigation systems for teaching and research (linear move, overhead sprinklers, drip irrigation systems, furrows, beds, flood and paddy)
  • strong links with the  Department of Primary Industries' Wagga Wagga Agricultural Institute located on campus
  • an extensive and well equipped experimental winery
  • tasting rooms for state-of-the-art wine sensory assessment

In 2012 CSU opened its $48.6 million National Life Sciences Hub (NaLSH).This facility includes three flexible learning and teaching areas, which each hold up to 50 students; four large research laboratory spaces including quarantine-approved research areas; a phytotron building housing controlled environment and growth chambers; three glasshouses; research and teaching support areas such as offices, plant rooms and bike storage; and a rhizolysimeter – an underground field laboratory.