Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010
The University of Queensland (UQ), via its commercialisation company, UniQuest, has signed an agreement with the Endeavour Foundation to extend its rights to deliver the innovative Latch-On literacy program for another five years.

Latch-On (Literacy and Technology Hands-On) is an evidence-based literacy program for young adults with an intellectual disability. The program provides opportunities for young adults with an intellectual disability to continue their literacy development in a post-secondary environment, using computer technology to enhance literacy, self-confidence, independence and work placement opportunities.

Latch-On combines traditional literacy and numeracy teaching styles with technology instruction. It also includes health and fitness education. The part-time, two-year program is delivered in small groups to students aged from 18 years, with an optional one-year extension.

UniQuest negotiated the first licence with Endeavour in 2004. The first Endeavour Latch-On classes were held in Newstead, Brisbane, before a purpose-built facility was established in nearby Windsor. Endeavour currently delivers Latch-On through qualified teachers to families in Brisbane, Bundaberg and Townsville.

The extension of the licence agreement coincides with Endeavour’s plans to launch a range of services to centres in NSW.

UniQuest has also licensed Latch-On to Vancouver’s North Island College and Canada’s Down Syndrome Research Foundation.

UniQuest Managing Director, David Henderson, believes the license extension highlights UQ’s leadership in the commercialisation of Social Sciences research.

“The Latch-On story is an excellent example of how valuable yet non-patentable ideas can still be developed into a commercially viable service to help particular families in communities all over the world,” Mr Henderson said.

“The Latch-On program was running successfully from a small centre within the University, but by partnering with the Endeavour Foundation, Associate Professor Karen Moni, Dr Anne Jobling and their colleagues have realised their dream of giving many more students with an intellectual disability the opportunity to continue their love of learning into adulthood.”

Gail Davidson, Endeavour’s General Manager for Disability Services Operations and Community Engagement said the licence extension allowed the organisation to continue providing families with a popular and unique service.

“We have seen how Latch-On can dramatically improve the life of each student who enrols,” Ms Davidson said.

“Latch-On enhances every graduate’s sense of self-worth and confidence to seek mainstream employment, filling a gap in the education system for some of this generation’s most enthusiastic young workers.

“Endeavour would like to give all our families the opportunity to be involved with Latch-On, so extending the licensing agreement for another five years means we can plan to offer the program to more families throughout Queensland and NSW.”

For more information about Latch-On, please visit

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UniQuest Pty Limited

Established by The University of Queensland in 1984, UniQuest is widely recognised as one of Australia’s largest and most successful university commercialisation groups, benchmarking in the top tier of technology transfer worldwide. From an intellectual property portfolio of 1,500+ patents it has created over 60 companies, and since 2000 UniQuest and its start-ups have raised more than $400 million to take university technologies to market. Annual sales of products using UQ technology and licensed by UniQuest are running at $3 billion. UniQuest now commercialises innovations developed at The University of Queensland and its commercialisation partner institutions: the University of Wollongong, University of Technology Sydney, James Cook University, University of Tasmania, Mater Medical Research Institute, and Queensland Health. UniQuest also provides access to an expansive and exclusive network of independent academics to tailor a consulting or project R&D solution to meet the diverse needs of industry and government, facilitating some 500 consulting, expert opinion, testing, and contract research services each year.

UniQuest is also a leading Australasian provider of international development assistance recognised for excellence in technical leadership, management and research. Working with agencies such as AusAID, NZAID, the Asian Development Bank and the World Bank, UniQuest has developed and implemented more than 400 projects in 46 countries throughout the Pacific, South-East Asia, the Indian sub-continent and Africa.

Leanne Wyvill
P: +61 7 3365 4037
M: +61 0 409767199

Endeavour Foundation

Endeavour Foundation is one of the largest non-government organisations in Australia supporting some 4000 people with a disability through services and businesses at over 230 locations in Queensland and New South Wales. Endeavour exists to provide opportunities for people with a disability in order to increase their participation in every aspect of society. Endeavour was established in 1951 by a group of Brisbane parents and friends responding to a need for education, care and support services for their children with intellectual disability. In 1986 the Department of Education took over the educational role of children with an intellectual disability, leaving Endeavour to concentrate on the provision of development and support services to adults with a disability. Endeavour now offers a multitude of services for children, adolescents and adults. With its large membership and successful fundraising and promotional activities Endeavour has established local offices across Queensland and recently expanded into NSW with the acquisition of Employment Services providing jobs for nearly 600 people.
Kirsty Brown
P: +61 7 3900 5455
M: 0408 728 941


intellectual disability, down syndrome, endeavour, UniQuest, Latch On



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