About us

About us

Newsletter Submission

All staff and students in the department can submit news items, upcoming events, recent thesis submissions, new and departing staff members, seminars etc. Submissions are made via this google form.
Note: You need to be logged into your MQ Google account to use this form. You can do this with your OneID credentials at mail.google.com or drive.google.com. If you are new to MQ you may need to ask FSE IT to activate an MQ google account; non-MQ google accounts will not work.

Department

Department meeting schedule and associated resources (Agenda, Minutes, Reports etc.) are accessible within the O365 Group Dept Physics and Astronomy for staff with membership to the meetings.
For information about accessing these resources see > pdf document

**2019 Boardroom and MPR recurring meeting request form > link
**2018 Department Service Excellence nominations > form

Department Calendar and Key Dates
A 2018 calendar of common academic dates, department/FSE/MQ events, and application deadlines is accessible here > 2018 calendar pdf document. Disclaimer: care is taken to ensure accuracy of published dates but they are subject to change and the user remains responsible for checking relevant websites for accurate dates and times. The 2019 calendar is being populated at the moment; draft will be published by end of 2018.

Department Leadership contacts

Head of DepartmentProf Michael Steel
Deputy Head of DepartmentProf Dave Spence
Learning and Teaching DirectorProf Dave Spence
Research DirectorProf Orsola De Marco
HDR DirectorA/Prof Alex Fuerbach
Equity and Diversity Committee ChairEmma Hastings

Acknowledgement of Country
Staff and students are encouraged to include an Acknowledgement of Country in the program agenda for small events and committee meetings. This is an acknowledgement given by the event lead that recognises and pays respect to the traditional people of land on which Macquarie University stands. A brief explanation and example wording can be found here > pdf document. If you are unsure about how to proceed or have any questions please don’t hesitate to contact a member of the leadership within the department, or contact Walanga Muru directly.

Distribution (email) Groups

The Department has a number of different email distribution groups that can be used to email various cohorts and staff types. These are all accessible in the Outlook Address Book. The membership and general information about the purpose of each group is also accessible in the Address Book details. Honorary academics and fellows situated at MQ are included where appropriate.

All staff and postgraduate students (includes all lists below) > fse.physastro@mq.edu.au
Academic staff (includes all academic and research staff and Fellows) > fse.physastro-academic@mq.edu.au 
Research staff (postdocs, Fellows, research associates) > fse.physastro-research@mq.edu.au
Professional staff (includes all administrators and technical staff) > fse.physastro-professional@mq.edu.au
Postgraduate students (includes the PhD and MRes lists as described below) > fse.physastro-postgraduate@mq.edu.au
PhD students (includes PhD students, visiting scholars and HDR Director) > fse.physastro-phd@mq.edu.au
MRes students (includes MRes1, MRes2 and MRes Directors) > fse.physastro-mres@mq.edu.au

Other targeted groups also exist; contact the Admin Team for advice about these, or to have any missing staff or students added to any existing distribution list.

NOTE Research Group email lists for MQAAAstro, MQPhotonics, QSciTech, CNBP, OptoFab are currently unchanged but are expected to be updated to the new format sometime in 2019 (note that this is waiting for FSE IT to be able to proceed).

Media, and getting your stories out there

Follow our social pages and promote them to your students and colleagues. Have you taken a great photo at a recent event or while on AOD? ... then email our Outreach Coordinators Kelly and Sue to have photos and content posted or promoted.

Facebook @mqphysastro   Twitter @MQPhysAstro    Instagram @mqphysastro

If you've recently had a research breakthrough, won external funding, received a prize, published an article or you're arranging a special event like a seminar or roadtrip, then do we have the people for you! Kelly, Sue and Orsola can get you get in touch with the Science in Media team who can help get your news out into the world. You may not be sure that it's worth promoting, but it will be. If you would like assistance with getting started then contact Kelly or Sue, or go to Suggest A Story

Health and Safety

Physics and Astronomy Heath and Safety representative and Laser Safety Officer is Ben Norton (extn 9106) who is available for help and advice. The MQ Health and Safety wiki page has templates, laser safety forms, safe work instructions, operating procedures and much more > MQ website link.

The Faculty of Science and Engineering has completed migration to the SciQuest safety management system which will integrate the requirements for procurement and storage of chemicals, as well as managing the University chemical inventory of use and disposal. Visit the SciQuest wiki page for login and use information > MQ website link.

The following MQ research policy website covers most hazardous materials and their approvals, and related procedures and policies for lasers, chemicals and much more; it is a highly suggested read from Ben Norton > MQ policy link

First Aid Officers in Physics and Astronomy are listed in the table below

NAMELOCATIONCONTACT
Emma Hastings 7 Wally's Walk (E6B) 2711 x8911
Ben Norton 6 Science Road (E8B) 307 x9106
Adam Joyce 14 Sir Christopher Ondaatje Ave (E7B) 214 x1061
Danny Cochran + James Wood 14 Sir Christopher Ondaatje Ave (E7B) 122 x8972
Alex Stokes Australian Hearing Hub 4514 x5042
Alex Arriola Australian Hearing Hub 4514 x5043
First Aid Room 14 Eastern Road (E8A) 107

Teaching and HDR Supervision

HDR Supervision

The Faculty of Science and Engineering HDR Office has put together a document that explains much about the processes and policies associated with applications and supervision. The document is jam-packed with links to hard to find information and is recommended reading for all new and experienced MRes and PhD Supervisors at MQ > pdf document.

In addition to that resource, the following provides more information specific to HDR supervision within Physics and Astronomy. All members of the departmental HDR committee are more than happy to assist you with everything you need to get up to speed with your new role as HDR supervisor. In the first instance, please contact either Alex Fuerbach (HDR director) or Jo Dawson (deputy HDR director, MRes Year 2 coordinator). If you have questions concerning the competitiveness and/or eligibility of one of your potential HDR applicants, please talk to Danny Terno.

  1. HDR progress interviews
    In addition to the compulsory Online APR (Annual Progress Report) system > MQ website link, the department organises annual progress interviews with all PhD and MRes Year 2 candidates to monitor their progress and provide additional support. On top of this, we also require all PhD students to attend a short meeting with a member of the HDR committee 7 months before their expected submission date.
  2. HDR budget
    All PhD and MRes Year 2 students can apply for funds of up to $1500 per year to support their research projects. Applications need to be discussed with the supervisor beforehand, and must then be submitted online > FSE HDR budget form. The purpose of this process is also to train students in submitting a mini-research grant proposal so please take the application seriously and help your student with drafting the application. For International conferences, funding is available via the Postgraduate Research Fund (PGRF) Scheme > MQ website link. This is a competitive scheme and training for supervisors and students is provided annually before submission closes.
  3. Annual Showcase of Research
    Each year (typically October/November), the department organises a poster day where HDR students present their projects to their peers, MQ staff and students and the wider community. Participation for PhD students is compulsory and participation of MRes Year 2 students is highly encouraged.

In August 2018, Universities Australia released a new Principles For Respectful Supervisory Relationships as part of its response to the Respect.Now.Always campaign within the university's sector. Details about the release and a copy of the Principles are available on their website > Universities Australia link

Casual Academics for sessional teaching

The Department of Physics and Astronomy offers a range of undergraduate subjects to students completing programs within the Faculty of Science and Engineering, and service and elective subjects to students from all across campus. We employ casual academic staff to support the teaching of these programs, and expressions of interest from appropriately qualified individuals are accepted before the commencement of sessions 1 and 2 each year. Typically, expressions of interest outnumber available positions and allocating large numbers of casual academic staff can be very challenging. A range of considerations are used in allocating applicants to available timeslots, including (but not limited to):

  • the needs of the subject and the qualifications or field of expertise of the casual academic staff applicant;
  • casual academic staff availability for any given timeslot;
  • whether a casual academic staff applicant has completed sessional teaching in the past (i.e. are they a new applicant or a seasoned demonstrator);
  • workload balance across the available casual academic applicants;
  • providing opportunities for casual academic staff to advance from new hire to seasoned demonstrator, and where appropriate onto supervisor or tutor;
  • balancing skill levels and providing mentorship for new casual academic staff by pairing together new and seasoned staff.

The full process of recruiting casual academic staff (including the above considerations) has been reviewed by both the Learning and Teaching, and the Equity and Diversity Committees for the Department of Physics and Astronomy to ensure that an equitable, representative allocation of casual academic staff is achieved each session, and to ensure that the learning outcomes of the subjects and the students are fully supported. Any questions or concerns about casual academic staff recruitment and allocation for sessional teaching should be directed to the Technical Team Manager > Ben Norton.

Travel

Booking travel at MQ can be a little confusing, and there is much to do before you depart. If this is your first time travelling at MQ (whether staff or student) please review the University policies and guidelines at the links that follow. To book travel, please complete the steps below and use only those forms provided here. Note the guidelines for personal travel during Absence on Duty.

Travel Policy and Guideline > MQ website link; Travel Overseas > MQ website link; Travel Insurance > MQ website link; Travel Resources > MQ website linkTravel EmergenciesMQ website link

  • Step 1: contact Campus Travel or STA Travel for a quote for international flights or print a current online quote for domestic flights (see Travel Rescources above for links)
  • Step 2: complete an Absence on Duty form.
  • Step 3: complete a Travel Budget and Travel Diary > excel document
  • Step 4: complete an NOPF for a Per Diem or Travel Advance (if applicable) > instructions pdf > NOPF excel file
  • Step 5: submit all forms and quotes for supervisor and Head of Department approval after which flights and accommodation will be booked by Lisa Pesavento or Megha Patel
  • Step 6: submit all receipts within 30 days of return to acquit an approved Travel Advance, or seek a reimbursement for relevant costs (both via NOPF) > NOPF excel file
  • Step 7: upload receipts or tax invoices to Concur to finalise travel transaction paid for using MQ Corporate Card (if applicable)

When completing any financial forms related to travel purchases (NOPF, Concur etc), refer to the relevant travel Natural account codes > pdf document

Travelling by car?

There are three options here: use of the department fleet vehicle; hiring a car/van from Avis; or using your own vehicle.
The department car is available for use by staff and students of the department who currently hold a full Driver Licence (Provisional and Learner licences are not acceptable for insurance purposes). Bookings can be made at the following link where you will need your MQ ID to log in > Fleet Booking Tool. If you have not driven the department car before then you must provide a copy of your current Driver Licence to Megha who will also be able to provide you with the car keys. Be sure to complete the log book (in the car) after each journey.

Avis is the current preferred supplier for vehicle hire, and this tends to be a very economical way to get about when the department car is not available. You do need to plan ahead though. For more details about preferred suppliers, including promo code for Avis > MQ website link.

Use of your own vehicle requires approval from Head of Department both before and after the travel; there is a form to be completed. Please see Lisa prior to use of your own vehicle for University travel.

Purchasing

All purchases of chemicals must be initiated in SciQuest. If the chemical does not appear in a hosted catalogue then in must be ordered as a "type-in" order. The SciQuest safety management system integrates requirements for procurement and storage of chemicals, as well as managing the University chemical inventory of use and disposal. Visit the SciQuest wiki page for login and use information. Megha Patel can set up new user accounts and can assist with questions that you may have about SciQuest but please visit the wiki or speak to your supervisor for help in the first instance.

Purchases of gases should be made by completing a Gas Requisition form and a Purchase Order form. All gases are ordered through BOC and best contact for assistance with ordering is Joe Gatt in the Science Stores. Gas Requisition and Purchase Order forms should be submitted to Megha or to Lisa Pesavento once complete, and should be accompanied by a quote. Please be sure to familiarise yourself with the new gas requisition process before submitting an order.
Gas requisition process > pdf document
Gas Requisition form > word document
Purchase Order form > excel document
Natural account codes (2018 version) > pdf document

For purchases of items that are not chemicals or gases, use the Purchase Order form document above.  Contact Megha or Lisa to submit your order. Many common lab consumables are available through the Science Stores located at 14 Eastern Road at the loading dock.

Staff Appointments

Macquarie provides comprehensive information about recruitment process and policy on the central pages - this an excellent place to start with any recruitment process whether casual or continuing > MQ website link
Current enterprise agreements for academic and professional staff, including detail about employment, pay and leave conditions are available at this > MQ website link. Current casual and fixed term/continuing rates of pay for academic and professional staff are available at this > MQ website link.

All staff appointment administration is overseen by Lisa Pesavento for Physics and Astronomy and you will need to provide her with the following documentation depending upon the appointment type.

Casual appointments

The following documents must be submitted no later than 1 week prior to the start of the appointment. Failure to submit in this timeframe will mean that your staff member will be unable to commence as anticipated.

  • Casual Professional staff appointment form (use this form for all research support roles) > form link
  • Salary budget for casual appointments > excel document
  • Casual Academic staff appointment form (use this form for teaching support roles) > form link
Fixed term and Continuing appointments

In 2018 the executive of Macquarie University began a process of reviewing (by panel) all requests for fixed term and continuing appointments; this requires approval first to be given by the Executive Dean and General Manager of FSE. The Executive panel meets each fortnight, with the faculty reviewing requests on a similar cycle in sync with the Executive panel. If either the faculty or the Executive panel are unconvinced of the need and financial viability of the request role or appointment then it will not proceed. It is critical to have all documentation completed well in advance of the anticipated start date or renewal date (for existing fixed term) to ensure that the approvals, advertisement and appointments can all be made in time. Allow 4 weeks for renewal of existing fixed term appointments and 6 weeks for new positions that require advertisement. Lisa Pesavento and Emma Hastings will be able to provide advice here but cannot short cut the processes - they are a University directive with the full support of FSE leadership.
The following documents must be submitted.

  • Fixed term and continuing appointment request form (Physastro) > pdf document
  • Justification - this should be a single paragraph justifying the need for the role and the risk of not proceeding
  • Salary budget for fixed term or continuing appointment > excel document

Please be sure to speak to Emma ASAP to arrange desk space for your new staff. Space is hard to come by so allow time for arrangements to be made.

Honorary Appointments and Visiting Scholars

Allow 4 weeks processing time for domestic visitors, and 4 months processing time for international visitors requiring visa sponsorship. Visitors are not covered by Macquarie University insurance until such time as all documentation is received and all processes are completed; this means that they should not be on campus, using campus resources.

The following central page provides access to the required forms and essential reading about visa application processes for appointing Honorary academic titles and visiting scholars > MQ website link. Please be sure to start there regardless of whether your appointee is domestic or international.

Then follow these steps:

Honorary Appointments (New and renewal)
  • Step 1: complete this form > word document. Refer to the MQ Honorary academic titles schedule > pdf document
  • Step 2:
    • if a Visa needs to be sponsored: provide the above completed form, current CV, current Passport (photo page), confirmation of employment and evidence of financial assistance to Megha. Allow up to 4 months for a visa sponsorship application to be processed.
    • if a valid appropriate Visa is already held or is not required (domestic appointees): provide the above completed form and current Passport (photo page) to Megha.
  • Step 3: Head of Department and Executive Dean will review the request; if approved, a Letter of Invitation will be provided to the visitor which they must sign and return to Megha ASAP.
  • Step 4: all documentation will be forwarded to HR by Megha for a record to be set up which will allow access to email and local systems (as required).
  • Step 5: Megha will allocate a desk for use by your visitor during their time here. We are unable to guarantee that your visitor will be provided a space near your research group but all efforts will be made to place them somewhere appropriate. Megha will be able to arrange swipe cards and keys if needed.
Visiting Scholars
  • Step 1: complete this form > word document
  • Step 2:
    • if a Visa needs to be sponsored: provide the above completed form, current CV, current Passport (photo page), confirmation of enrolment and evidence of financial assistance to Megha. Allow up to 4 months for a visa sponsorship application to be processed.
    • if a valid appropriate Visa is already held or is not required (domestic appointees): provide the above completed form and current Passport (photo page) to Megha.
  • Step 3: Head of Department and Executive Dean will review the request; if approved, a Letter of Invitation will be provided to the visitor which they must sign and return to Megha ASAP.
  • Step 4: all documentation will be forwarded to HR by Megha for a record to be set up which will allow access to email and local systems (as required).
  • Step 5: Vivienne will allocate a desk for use by your scholar during their time here. We are unable to guarantee that they will be provided a space near your research group but all efforts will be made to place them somewhere appropriate. Megha will be able to arrange swipe cards and keys if needed.

Outreach

There are plenty of outreach activities taking place throughout the year: school visits, planetarium and observatory shows, Open Day, magic shows... If you are planning an event or just visiting a school that you have a connection with, please be sure to let our Outreach Coordinators (Kelly and Sue) know about it. We have worked on expanding, clarifying and better presenting our outreach activities and there may be something fresh that you could take with you or roll into your event. Kelly and Sue can also assist with collateral and handouts, and connecting with FSE Marketing and Recruitment teams.

We'd like to get a full picture of all the outreach that we do, including the visits to schools that our academics are making for short talks. Please be sure to register your visits/talks on the simple form here > form link. Similarly, we'd like to capture what the schools think about our outreach so please share this survey with any schools that you have visited, for any purpose > survey link.

We also have a growing list of demonstrations and activities available for use at schools and events. The list is accessible here > register link. Please contact Ben Norton, Kelly or Sue if you have any questions about the demonstrations listed.

Administration

Department Administrative contacts

 NameOffice HoursResponsibilities
Department ManagerEmma HastingsMon-Fri
8am-4pm
strategy, planning, budget and administrative management
Administrator, Finance and StaffLisa PesaventoMon-Fri
7am-3pm
financial and budgetary enquiries and management; account enquiries; staff appointments; reimbursements
Administrator and Outreach CoordinatorSue Lumley (starts 4 Dec)Mon-Wed
hours tbc
assistant to Head of Department; outreach planning and coordination; social media and publications
Administrator and Outreach CoordinatorKelly SharplessWed-Fri
8.30am-4.30pm
assistant to Head of Department; outreach planning and coordination; social media and publications
Administrator, AcademicVictoria ParkMon-Fri
7.15am-3.15pm
enrolment, timetabling and results enquiries; academic staff support; AskMQ and Tracker requests; reporting; casual academic appointments and timesheets;
Administrator, AcademicVivienne WongMon-Fri
8.30am-4.30pm
enrolment, timetabling and results enquiries; academic staff support; special consideration; reporting; HDR student support; LEUs
Administrative AssistantMegha PatelMon-Fri
7am-3pm
building and room access and bookings; honorary appointments and visitors; purchasing and orders; SciQuest access; stationery and kitchen supplies; dept car bookings; general enquiries and repair requests
Administrator, EQUS RCBelinda WallisMon-Tues 9:30-4:30pm; Wed 9:30-2pmadministrative, events and financial reporting support for the EQUS Research Centre node at Macquarie University

If you are required to attend Jury Service and this will impact upon teaching or research priorities, please contact the Department Manager, Emma Hastings, who may be able to write a letter in support of your service being delayed to a later stage.

MQ templates for Word documents, Powerpoint slides and other applications are accessible for download > MQ Staff Portal

Phone User Guide - AVAYA 1608

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