About Us

Leading judicial education for an Australian judiciary

The National Judicial College of Australia (the NJCA) is an independent, not-for-profit entity, incorporated as a company limited by guarantee. Since its inception in 2002, the NJCA has designed, developed and delivered judicial education and training programs for Australian judicial officers across all court hierarchies and jurisdictions.

Our programs are comprehensive, consistent, systematic, of the highest quality. Central to our program design and evaluation process is the implementation of judicial education and training that is dynamic, able to respond to a uniquely changing and increasingly diverse Australian society and to developments in judicial responsibilities. We map contemporary judicial learning outcomes alongside the development of programs that focus on nationally consistent training to harness the judiciary’s confluence of interests.

Through our delivery of programs, the NJCA strives to foster the sense of an Australian judiciary.

A Brief History of the NJCA

During the 1990’s, calls were made for the establishment of a body to provide judicial education for the whole of the Australian judiciary. The establishment of such a body was supported by, among others, Sir Anthony Mason, a former Chief Justice of the High Courtand by the then Chief Justice, Chief Justice Gleeson, as well as by the Australian Institute of Judicial Administration.

Supporting the Quest for Judicial Excellence

Judicial education is essential to the effective administration of justice and in turn, the preservation of public confidence in our courts. Judicial education supports judicial independence, fosters discourse, strengthens the operation of the judicial function, judicial reasoning, decision making and judgment writing.

L-R: Council Members: Ms Kate Latimer, Mr Richard Glenn, Chief Magistrate Geason, Chief Magistrate Mary-Louise Hribal, Chief Justice Christopher Kourakis, Mr David Mackie, Chief Judge Peter Kidd (Justice Murray Aldridge, Ms Tamsyn Harvey, Justice Martin Burns, Justice Katrina Banks-Smith, Judge Laurence Levy

Program Development

NJCA judicial education and training programs are judge-led, reflect contemporary adult learning principles, are judicial officer centric in design and carry an experiential learning philosophy.  Our programs provide participants with an appropriate balance of knowledge and understanding, alongside practical judge-craft skills, achieved through structured, small group discussion and hands-on practical exercises relevant to the program rationale and judicial learning outcomes. 

The NJCA, as part of its overarching program development, published Attaining Judicial Excellence: A Guide for the NJCA in 2019 as a resource to support its strategic planning and to assist in designing professional development programs for Australian judicial officers. In developing the elements, the NJCA consulted with 80 judicial officers from around Australia and from different jurisdictions. These elements describe the knowledge, skills and qualities of judicial officers, which those consulted, consider to be facilitative of judicial excellence. A copy of the guide is available under our resources.

Program Advisory Committee

L-R: Program Advisory Committee Members: Justice Julie McIntyre, Professor Heather Roberts, Magistrate Andree Horrigan, Judge Liz Boyle, Magistrate Alison Adair, Acting Justice Monika Schmidt, Justice Glenn Martin, Chief Justice Christopher Kourakis, Ms Kate Latimer, Justice Brigitte Markovic, Justice James Stevenson (Judge Martine Marich, Professor Anthony Connolly, Acting Judge Ann Ainslie Wallace