Curtin University

Curtin is Western Australia’s largest university, welcoming 58,000 students. In addition to our main campus in Perth, we have campuses in Dubai, Malaysia and Singapore. In 2017, we celebrated “50 Years of Innovation”, recognising the strides we have made in evolving from the Western Australian Institute of Technology (1967–1986) to the sophisticated global university we are today.

Curtin leads a number of major international research projects and is involved with more than 70 research centres and collaborations.

Our growing reputation has seen us rapidly rise up the international rankings in recent years. In 2017, we were ranked among the top one percent of the world’s universities in the Academic Ranking of World Universities.

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The race to map the human brain may be more political than scientific. brewbooks

The brain race: can giant computers map the mind?

In the past month, we have seen two major announcements of huge projects to map the brain – the European Human Brain Project (HBP) and the Obama Brain Activity Map (BAM). What you may not have noticed…
Raytheon’s “extreme-scale analytics” system can track people’s movements like never before. c-reel.com

RIOT gear: your online trail just got way more visible

The recent publication of a leaked video demonstrating American security firm Raytheon’s social media mining tool RIOT (Rapid Information Overlay Technology) has rightly incensed individuals and online…
Are students really paying for their degrees in exchange for sharing their beds? Degree image from www.shutterstock.com

Swapping sex for a degree: the myth of the ‘sugar daddy’

This year has already seen a flurry of media commentary regarding the “sugar daddy” phenomenon, much of it self-generated for publicity reasons by sites such as SeekingArrangement.com. Sugar daddies (and…
Chrissie Swan and her management have attracted massive media attention in the aftermath of photos of her smoking being published. AAP/Tracey Nearmy

Tears, shame, smoking and PR

The past week has seen a torrent of news coverage about Chrissie Swan, who “confessed” to smoking while pregnant with her third child. The confession was followed by myriad commentators and op-eds criticising…
Graph Search will allow users (and businesses) to pick out the information they want … assuming we let them in. vincos/Flickr

Facebook’s Graph Search, privacy and the social media contradiction

Initial responses to Facebook’s newly announced Graph Search (a name only a software engineer could love) appear to be split into two main camps: those who have celebrated the level of nuanced detail that…
The SKA is on the horizon, but how do we get from here to there? Pete Wheeler, ICRAR

Aspiration vs delivery: the long road to the Square Kilometre Array

The Square Kilometre Array (SKA) radio telescope has been on the cards since the early 1990s. It took until May of last year to find out where it will be built – in South Africa, Australia and New Zealand…
We can learn a lot about the conditions life can endure by looking under the ice of Antarctica. Eugene Kaspersky

A life less ordinary: looking under the surface of Lake Vida

The search for life in extreme environments is an exploration not only of the robustness of earthly life, but also of our origins. And perhaps the biggest question here is whether the earth is a unique…
Despite a government target, students from poor backgrounds risk being left out of higher education. University student image from www.shutterstock.com

A low target: enrolling poor uni students remains a challenge

According to the Federal Government, Australian public universities need to be more inclusive, particularly when it comes to enrolling poorer students. They’ve set a target to have 20% of undergraduate…
The products marketed as “legal weed” might cause more harm than the real thing. prensa

Legal highs: what should we do about synthetic cannabis?

Synthetic cannabis is a lab-made product that mimics the effects of cannabis to give users a high when smoked. It has been sold in Australia since 2011 under various brand names, with a range of chemical…
Prime minister Julia Gillard has set out Australia’s priorities in the Asian Century. AAP/Paul Miller

Asian Century White Paper: experts respond

Prime minister Julia Gillard released the Australia in the Asian Century White Paper in an address to the Lowy Institute on Sunday. The paper sets out 25 “national objectives” to prepare Australia for…
Some people could be left behind in the digital revolution in higher education. Divide image from www.shutterstock.com

Online education: can we bridge the digital divide?

FUTURE OF HIGHER EDUCATION: We continue our series on the rise of online and blended learning and how free online courses are set to transform the higher education sector. Today, Tim Pitman writes on who…
Queensland Health Minister Lawrence Springborg announcing job cuts in his department on September 7, 2012. AAP

Censoring public health in Queensland - a dangerous precedent?

Beyond the recent publicity around cuts to health and other portfolios, something deeply disturbing – even sinister – is occurring in Queensland. The state government is implementing health policies on…
Ah, excuse me, I’d like my money back. University image from www.shutterstock.com

Are Australian universities being honest with their students?

Would you like to go to a university where “free thinkers from all over the world come together to make a difference” or, if you like getting to know people, you could go to a university where you can…
Why hasn’t human health been considered in the push for expanded coal facilities? AAP Image/Paul Miller

Newcastle’s T4 project puts short-term profit before health

A massive expansion of Newcastle’s coal export terminal has been proposed by Port Waratah Coal Services. Approval is likely soon, but the expansion’s effect on human health has been ignored in the project’s…
Australia’s Jacqueline Freney celebrates after the Women’s 100m Backstroke on August 30. Kerim Okten/EPA

Prowess and poise: Paralympians should be household names

As I peered out of a frosted Canberra window with child-like amazement at the gossamer snowflakes cascading from the muted grey sky, I thought of my friend training in the warm Swiss sun in preparation…

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