Western Sydney University's information is commensurate with a very large higher education agency. The University has a large and continuously growing website with substantial repositories of information on all of its principal educational activities.
In particular, the University's website includes is a wealth of published information related to teaching of the University's courses and research across the University's disciplines. The structure and function of University's administration is also published, and you are able to locate particular information on any aspect of the university's operations using the homepage search box.
While most information for students, staff, and the community is published via the University's web site, the University also holds information in various electronic and hard copy files, records, archives and University systems.
Note: all information referred to in this guide is provided freely by the University. If you experience difficulties locating open access information online, please contact the Right to Information Officer for assistance.
Accessing Our Information
In many instances, the contact details of the holders of the University's web-based information are referred to at the foot of the web site. Academic and administrative units may be contacted directly to enquire about access to related information.
Where a more complex search is required, both informal requests and formal applications may be freely submitted to the Right to Information Officer for advice on gaining further access or lodging a formal application for information. Details on how to seek advice or lodge an application is provided at the Making Applications under GIPA web page.
Individuals can request information held by University that is not publicly available on this website. We will endeavour to respond to all information requests informally, requiring a formal access application to be submitted only in limited circumstances and as a last resort. While not bound by a statutory timeframe, the Right to Information Officer will respond to informal requests as quickly as possible.
Where the information requested is not readily available or requires significant time to obtain or assemble, informal requests would be recommended to be submitted as formal applications, and formal applicants would be advised of any costs involved to provide the requested information.
After considering the possibility of requesting information informally, applicants wanting to submit a formal access application can do so by contacting the Right to Information Officer to discuss this request, and/or obtain a GIPA application form.
Accessing the University's information is generally free for informal applications, and attracts the standard fee of $30 for formal applications. Informal applications will generally be accepted where the information requested is readily accessible and not requiring extensive deliberation over the public interest test. Informal applications that involve greater complexity, or time and/or resource impacts are generally referred to the formal application pathway.
Formal applications requiring extensive time and resources may incur additional fees in accordance with the Act.
Forms of Access
Information requested is generally provided in the form specified by the applicant, and in accordance with the Act.
In some cases, access to information that is critical to the operations of the University may be provided in a manner other than that which the applicant requests.
The University recognises that we must:
- make certain information publicly available
- proactively release other information to the community
- release our information in response to informal access requests, and
- give the public a legally enforceable right to access our information through making an access application, unless there is an overriding public interest against doing so.
Agency Information Guide Review Committee
The University proactively releases information that it considers to be in the public interest, despite not being required by the GIPA Act to release it. We review our proactive release program annually through the annual meeting of the Agency Information Guide Review Committee. This Committee meets to consider the proactive release of information that has taken place over the past year, and review the prospects for the further proactive release of information. Committee members come from a wide range of the University's units, and welcomes invited guests from units not routinely represented to speak on matters of relevance to their area of operations.
The University maintains an archives collection of official records and publications of the University and an extensive historical collection primarily related to the Hawkesbury campus. Information about the holdings and access to them can be obtained from the University Archives.
Western Sydney University's Right to Information Officer can be contacted by phone on (02) 9678 7267.