Wood Science Courses

Forest products are much more efficient users of energy than other materials and there is now a decreasing availability of products from some regions and changes in quality from others. A greater understanding of the user’s final requirements is needed to adjust to this situation.  Requirements may be for high quality appearance grade products, or for a uniform quality and lower cost product. Either way, the magic lies in processing each style of timber (the raw material) for its efficient conversion into a marketable and fit for purpose product.

Timber processors invariably seek to satisfy stringent market demands.  A  lot of knowledge, expertise and information is needed in order to successfully manage things like variable raw material supply volumes;  variable raw material (wood) characteristics which in turn impact yields and cost of processing them; and the wider Australian and international market dynamics (raw material supply/demand/price and ditto for end products) which their businesses face.

Integral to managing these challenges is an appreciation of wood science and technology and the new techniques being introduced.

This Gottstein Trust Wood Science Course of 5 full days duration has been planned to provide this information. The course can even assist decision makers in the industry to gain greater efficiency in their operations.


  • Provide an understanding of wood and the properties which affect processing and end-use.
  • Provide insights into the potential for development of new products.
  • Provide an appreciation of contemporary issues including supply and demand trends in the forest products industries.

Next Course

The next Wood Science Course has been scheduled to a NEW DATE. It will run from Sunday evening 21st June to Friday afternoon 26th June 2020 . The first two days will be at Albury with a great program of activities before travelling by luxury coach to Canberra for the second leg of the course. This will take place at the Fenner School of Environment and Society – thanks to the generous support of the Australian National University.

Course Program

The 2020 program has a new extended field trip that runs over two days. The 2018 course ran the following Program: Gottstein_2018_Wood Science Course Program

To Register

Online registration is open from 15th November 2019. Course numbers are limited so early booking is a good idea. The booking terms are found here. Please note the Trust does not have the facility for online payment for this course. Payment by direct deposit or cheque are accepted. The online registration section provides a Tax Invoice.

Who Should Attend

Senior and potential managers, operational team members, policy people, consultants, executives, non-executive directors and service providers within the forest and wood products supply chain. The course will be of particular relevance to those who may have recently joined the industry.

Why You Should Attend

You will gain a deeper understanding of wood science and key features of the modern wood products industry – this will be an asset in your professional work environment.  This course should also assist you to place your operation within a national and international context.

In order to facilitate informal exchange and discussion, the course is limited to about 35 participants.

Invited Speakers

The 2020 course will once again feature guest presenters with wide experience in the industry. Speakers typically donate their time and expertise to the Gottstein Trust courses – we are indebted to them for such generous support.


The 2020 Registration fee includes accommodation in Albury for two nights Sunday 21st and Monday 22nd June and all meals from Sunday dinner through to afternoon tea on Tuesday 23rd June 2020. The registration fee does not include accommodation in Canberra for the three nights Tuesday 23rd, Wednesday 24th and Thursday 25th June 2020.

For the courses in Canberra, most participants like to stay on campus with University House at the Australian National University.  The University House hotel is  just a short walk through the campus to the Fenner School (about 10 minutes) where class sessions are held.  In 2020 the Canberra section of the course will be 3 days, following on from a two day field trip. If there are any local Canberra field trips in a course program, these always begin and end at University House and there are no other pick up or set down options.

In Canberra participants are required to book and pay for their own accommodation and any meals which are not part of the course program, it is entirely their choice where they choose to stay. However the Gottstein Trust is able to negotiate a group discount rate for those who book at University House.