Attending lectures at La Trobe University Bendigo



Would you like to sit in on some university lectures? Don’t forget we are allowed, as U3A members, to attend lectures without paying a cent. There’s a great list to choose from.

Here are some subjects for semester one, 2019. Click here for details.

  1. Aboriginal Australian History: Place, Mobility, And Memory
  2. American Literature
  3. Anarchists, Terrorists, And Freedom Fighters
  4. Art And Its Makers: Renaissance To Impressionism
  5. Australian Contemporary Children’s Literature
  6. Cognition
  7. Death, Pleasure And The Literary Imagination
  8. Ecology
  9. Editing And Publishing Experimental Foundations Of Psychological Science
  10. Global Migration: People, Power And Mobility
  11. Genres In Children’s Literature
  12. History, Philosophy And Methodology Of Psychological Science
  13. Myth, Legend And History
  14. Society, People And Place
  15. What Is Art?

We are lucky to have an outstanding university at Bendigo, La Trobe, and luckier still as U3A Castlemaine members to be permitted to sit in on lectures at no charge. This great arrangement was set up around 2008 when two of our former presidents, Tom Comerford and Sally Kaptein, approached La Trobe.

Under the agreement, attendance by our members should not generate extra work or costs for the university, so we can only attend lectures, but not tutorials, field visits or practicals – and of course we don’t have to do any assessed work. This means we can just listen and do as much, or as little, of the recommended reading as we feel like.

Other students on the campus have been welcoming to our members, and some have shared notes and online material which is not accessible to us. Some lecturers have also relaxed the rules on extra events. One of our members ended up in the State Archives reading to a blind student and a young student who couldn’t ‘read that old writing’. It also means the University has the right to exclude us from particular subjects where the class is already full, or for other reasons – though generally we have been able to attend subjects we’ve chosen.

Choosing a subject
Finding subjects on the university website
Finding the timetable on the university website
Using the university library
How to register

Choosing a Subject
There are a great variety of stimulating subjects - critical thinking, creative non-fiction, planning, biology of the cell, environmental studies, exercise physiology, rural and regional issues in justice - the list goes on. Many courses make no assumptions about previous knowledge, or for which life experiences are preparation enough. And if you went to university in the past, this is a great way to pick up something new, or to see what’s changed.

A growing number of courses are being delivered in ‘blended mode’ – courses delivered face-to-face to Melbourne students while those at other campuses watch on screen. Humanities and Social Sciences, Planning and Education have lecturers at Bendigo and some blended courses have lectures in Bendigo screened at the other campuses, so you need to check the arrangements for each course. Lectures in Media and Visual Arts are closely related to the practical workshops and studio elements, and as such aren’t suitable for U3A members.

Most subjects are run on a semester basis and have a one- or two-hour lecture each week for 12 weeks, starting either in the week beginning 5 March (semester one) or the week beginning 30 July (semester two).

Finding subjects on the university website
To view available subjects, click here.
User guide for searching subject

Finding the timetable on the university website
• You can find the day, time and location of the lectures by putting the subject code into the search field on the La Trobe timetable page which you can access by clicking here.
User guide for finding timetable details

Using the university library
Use of the Heyward Library at Flora Hill is free for community members, however in order to borrow items you need to purchase a library card costing $30. Click here for further information.

How to register
Enrol in La Trobe University Lectures in the normal manner on MyU3A.
Complete the form U3A Castlemaine Registration for subjects at La Trobe, Bendigo
Copies of the form are also available at the U3A Castlemaine office.
Email ( the completed form, or return it to the U3A Castlemaine office, by:
• 19 February 2019 for semester one subjects, or
• 19 July for semester two subjects

For further help or information please send an email to or call or drop into the U3A Castlemaine office during office hours and ask to be put in contact with the U3A member who liaises with La Trobe.