The UQ Poche Centre facilitates a range of research opportunities for undergraduate, honours and masters by coursework students through the UQ Summer Research Program.

The Centre brings together Indigenous and health expertise across the University, and works collaboratively with Indigenous community organisations and health providers. A core objective of the Centre is the development of a skilled, culturally responsive health workforce.

The UQ Summer Research Program provides you with an opportunity to gain research experience working alongside some of the university’s leading academics and researchers and is coordinated by the UQ Student Employability Centre. All Summer Research scholars are eligible to apply for a scholarship for the duration of their research (between 6-10 weeks). 

Broad requirements for the Poche Centre Summer Research Scholarships

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students are especially encouraged to apply.
  • Students must be currently enrolled at UQ at the time of application.
  • Students must be studying for a degree relevent to the research discipline.
  • Students must have a high level of academic achievement.

Further information for applicants is available on the UQ Student Employability Centre website.

Applications for 2017 are now closed​

It is expected that scholars will work a minimum of 20 hours per week in each week of the research program. Please note that some positions require scholars to work on a full-time basis (up to 36 hours per week), and the expected workload is set by each supervisor. The scholar and the supervisor are able to negotiate the duration of the project and the workload requirements. 

A list of available Poche Centre projects is below.

Indigenous young people: Health and identity

Project title: Indigenous young people: Health and identity
Project duration: 10 weeks, with expectation of a minimum of 20 hr/week 
Preferred commencement date: 20 November 2017
Background:

Led by an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander research team this project aims to address the knowledge gap in our understandings of identity and  health through privileging Indigenous knowledge and experience.

The proposed project will critically examine existing literature relating to identity formation and development of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people.

The successful applicant will support the undertaking of a literature review and publication.

Expected outcomes & deliverables: 

The scholar will further their skills in analysis and writing for publication. The supervisor will provide mentorship and support in developing a work for publication.

Poche summer research scholars may be invited to present their findings and/or experiences at the conclusion of their project.

Suitable for: 3rd and 4th year students in Education, Health Sciences, Humanities & Social Sciences preferably with understanding of and/or experience working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Primary supervisor: Dr Chelsea Bond
Further information:

Prospective scholars may wish to contact Dr Chelsea Bond for further details.

Watchful waiting for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children with acute otitis media (WATCH) trial

Project title:

Watchful waiting for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children with acute otitis media (WATCH) trial

Project duration: 10 weeks, with expectation of a minimum of 20 hr/week 
Preferred commencement date: 20 November 2017 
Background:

Watchful waiting for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children with acute otitis media (WATCH) trial is a randomised control trial which aims to investigate appropriate treatment strategies for ear infections in Indigenous children in metropolitan areas to decrease their risk of developing chronic complications.

As part of this study, the research team are examining how carers, Aboriginal Health Workers, GPs, NPs, researchers and others feel about the  treatment of AOM, and undertaking/participating in research within a primary health care setting.

The successful applicant will carry out tasks relating to the analysis of the transcribed qualitative interviews.

Expected outcomes & deliverables: 

The successful applicant will:

  • Develop a skillset in qualitative data analysis
  • Gain competency in the use of NVivo software (no prior experience necessary)
  • Contribute to a study that will provide an evidence base for treatment of AOM in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children living in cities

Scholars may be invited to present their findings and/or experiences at the conclusion of their project.

Suitable for:

This project welcomes applications from UQ students with an interest in Indigenous health and a background in Health Sciences, Social Sciences or a related field, preferably with an understanding of and/or experience working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Primary supervisor: Dr Chelsea Bond
Further information:

Prospective scholars may wish to contact Dr Chelsea Bond for further details.

Indigenous Birthing in an Urban Setting Study

Project title:                 

Indigenous Birthing in an Urban Setting (IBUS) Study

            
Project duration: 6 - 10 weeks, with expectation of a minimum of 20 hr/week 
Preferred commencement date: 20 November 2017 
Background: The IBUS Study is evaluating best practice maternity care to improve maternal and infant health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families in South East Queensland. We are interested in understanding how Birthing on Country principles can best be implemented into maternity services in an urban setting. This study is done in partnership between the Mater Mothers Hospital, the Institute for Urban Indigenous Health, and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Health Service. We conduct surveys at 4 time points with women having Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander babies at the Mater Mothers Hospital and also at the Royal Brisbane and Womens Hospitals. So far we have over 200 women in the study, with almost 500 surveys completed. 


The successful applicant will be trained in research methods to undertake data collection alongside the IBUS Research Assistants. 

            
Expected outcomes & deliverables: 

The student may gain skills on how to obtain informed consent, recruit women, conduct surveys, assist with infant developmental assessments as well as liaise with staff from different models of maternity care, Aboriginal Medical Services, and community based programs. They will gain experience working in a multidisciplinary multiagency partnership, through a study that uses collaborative action-based research to make positive change in service delivery and planning.

Suitable for:                 

This would suit students with backgrounds including but not limited to Midwifery, Nursing, Social Work, Community Services, Medicine, Public Health, Social Science and Indigenous Studies.

Primary supervisor: Dr Sophie Hickey and Prof Sue Kildea
Further information:                 

Prospective scholars may wish to contact Dr Sophie Hickey for further details.

            

Sport-for-development in Indigenous communities - Australia and Canada

Project title: 

Sport-for-development in Indigenous communities - Australia and Canada

Project duration:

10 weeks, with a minimum of 20 hrs/wk

Preferred commencement date:

20 November 2017 

Description:

This project is part of a large international project that is a collaboration between scholars in Australia and Canada, as well as a variety of individuals, communities, and organisations associated with the extractives sector, sport, and education. The project is examining the variety of perspectives related to the place of sport in Indigenous communities and the role of extractives companies (mineral, oil, gas mining etc) in supporting sport. Scholarship winners may be involved in a variety of activities included (but not limited to) sourcing and reviewing social media (e.g. Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn) and literature sources (e.g. annual reports, journal articles), collaborating with domestic and international scholars, developing and presenting review documents, and other related work.

Expected outcomes and deliverables:

Successful scholars may gain skills in social media review and analysis, literature review and analysis, collaborating with peers and academic personnel, as well as aspects of project management. Scholars will be supported in developing and presenting their work.

Suitable for:

This project is open to applications from students with an interest (and preferably a background) in sport and/or Indigenous studies. Students should be approaching the final semesters of their program.

Primary Supervisor:

 

Dr Steven Rynne (with other domestic and international collaborators)

Further info:

Prospective applicants may wish to contact Dr Steven Rynne for further information / clarification.

 

Strengthening the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workforce: Leadership in Research

Project title:

Strengthening the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Workforce: Leadership in Research

Project duration:

6 - 10 weeks, with expectation of a minimum of 20 hr/week 

Preferred commencement date:

20 November 2017 

Background:

The UQ Poche Centre for Indigenous Health is committed to supporting leadership in urban Indigenous health research and workforce development. Fundamental is Indigenous leadership in shaping research agendas, ensuring that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities benefit from research, and foregrounding and respecting Indigenous knowledges.. This Summer Research project offers the student the opportunity to be involved in work focused on improving health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. .

This Summer Research project offers the student the opportunity to be involved in the development of strategies that lead to improved health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Expected outcomes & deliverables: 

The successful applicant will have the opportunity to be involved in the research work of the UQ Poche Centre and be exposed to broad range of research activities. 

Key tasks may include:

  • Conduct a literature search
  • Assist with grant and ethics applications
  • Assist with the analysis of transcripts
  • Report writing
  • Contribute to database development
  • Otherwise assist on research projects or tasks.

Poche summer research scholars may be invited to present their findings and/or experiences at the conclusion of their project.

Suitable for:

Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander students in the health faculties.

Primary supervisor:

Dr Chelsea Bond and Dr Bryan Mukandi

Further information:

Prospective scholars may wish to contact Dr Chelsea Bond for further details.

Sports, Stories and Survival: Examining Cherbourg's Past and Present

Project title: 

Sport, Stories and Survival: Examining Cherbourg’s Past and Present

Project duration:

6 - 10 weeks, with a minimum of 20 hrs/wk

Preferred commencement date:

20 November 2017 

Description:

Background: Cherbourg was established in 1904 approximately 250 kilometres north-west of Brisbane, and is recognised as one of Queensland’s most famous (and infamous) Indigenous settlements. Sport has played an incredibly important role from the inception of Cherbourg until contemporary times and the Summer Program will make a significant contribution to examining the cultural, social, and political complexities of sport at Cherbourg. This analysis of sport will inform us about a little-known period of our history when Indigenous people were essentially excluded from mainstream Australia and when Aboriginal people gradually and incrementally engaged in sport to create a collective identity, to test themselves in Anglo-Australian competitions, and as a barometer of 20th-century race relations.

 Aims: This project, via a focus on the sport of boxing, aims to:

  • Collaboratively work with the research team and Cherbourg community to ensure their voices are recorded/preserved
  • Research and collate written records to share with the community
  • Explore, share and record personal memories and meanings
  • Individually, contribute to the process of healing through history making
  • Collectively, contribute to reconciliation efforts through collective memory making and displays of these memories

Expected outcomes and deliverables:

Students will develop skills in historical research and benefit from participating in the project through exposure to the larger research context in which this project sits. More broadly, students will gain an understanding of Aboriginal Australian culture, develop skills in engaging with Aboriginal people on their terms, and gain additional preparation for future interactions with Indigenous people during their professional lives after graduation.

 Key tasks are to:

  • Conduct literature searches where appropriate
  • Assist with archival and library research
  • Contribute to database development
  • Organise oral history interviews with individuals, if appropriate, to share and record personal memories and meanings
  • Liaise with Aboriginal groups and memory institutions to make appropriate documents and materials available

Suitable for:

UQ-enrolled students only. Ideally, applicants should have taken at least one of the HMNS sociocultural courses (e.g., sport history, sport sociology) and be motivated to work with and learn alongside Indigenous cultures.

Primary Supervisor:

 

Dr Gary Osmond and Associate Professor Murray Phillips

Further info:

Prospective applicants may wish to contact Dr Gary Osmond or Associate Professor Murray Phillips for further details.

 

Why don't clients attend health appointments?

Project title: 

Why don't clients attend health appointments?

Project duration:

6 weeks, with a minimum of 20 hrs/wk

Preferred commencement date:

27 November 2017

Description:

The Institute for Urban Indigenous Health (IUIH) Ltd is a not-for-profit, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Controlled Organization which leads the planning, development and delivery of comprehensive primary health care to Indigenous communities of the South East Queensland Region. The IUIH and its Members serve Australia’s second largest but fastest growing Indigenous population. IUIH’s mission is to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in South East Queensland have access to comprehensive, high quality and timely primary health care services, integrated with the broader health and human services system.

The project will require the student to review and consult with clients to determine what barriers are in place for them not to attend their health and dental appointments. This could be followed by developing a process to implement across the organization the relevant resources required and how to help break down the barriers. This project will develop and pilot questions and a process for understanding why clients do not come to health and dental appointments.

Expected outcomes and deliverables:

The student will gain skills in data collection, data analysis and may have the opportunity to contribute to  a publication from their research.

The successful student/s will be required to complete an induction with the student placement coordinator at IUIH’s Windsor head office before commencing their placement. Additionally, all project students will be asked to present their projects to the team in a monthly research forum, and to provide a project report, once they have completed the project.

Suitable for:

The student needs to be able to work independently and proactively and follow directives effectively. Students will be given some cultural awareness training and will get the most out of their placement if they come with an ability and willingness to be flexible, reflect on their own values and culture and humility to learn.

This project is open to applications from UQ enrolled students with a background in dentistry, medicine, allied health or similar fields.

Primary Supervisor:

 

Professor Pauline Ford (UQ) and Dr Kate Odgers-Jewell (IUIH)

Further info:

Prospective applicants may wish to contact either Professor Pauline Ford or Dr Kate Odgers-Jewell for further details.

 

What do Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in urban South East Queensland understand, want and need to continue to make informed choices about family planning: an IBUS sub-study

Project title: 

What do Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in urban South East Queensland understand, want and need to continue to make informed choices about family planning: an IBUS sub-study 

Project duration:

10 weeks, with a minimum of 20 hrs/wk

Preferred commencement date:

20 November 2017

Description:

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women have a higher total fertility rate than non-Indigenous women, and the rate of births to Indigenous teenagers in Queensland is about 5 times that of all teenagers in the state (ABS 2012). Increased family spacing has been found to improve maternal and infant health outcomes. However, little current evidence is available to inform practice for health practitioners on how to best support Indigenous families in the urban setting to make informed choices about family planning. Through a series of qualitative focus groups, we aim to better understand what Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in urban South East Queensland want and need to continue to make informed choices about family planning.

Expected outcomes and deliverables:

The successful applicant’s research project will primarily investigate attitudes and understandings about Family Planning among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women in urban South East Queensland.

The scholar will develop skills in qualitative research and data analysis, with the opportunity to assist in the facilitation of focus groups.

There is opportunity for the scholar to be supported in developing work for publication.

Suitable for:

This project would be suitable for students with a health or social science background.

Primary Supervisor:

 

Dr Sophie Hickey and Professor Sue Kildea

Further info:

Prospective applicants may wish to contact Dr Sophie Hickey for further details.

 

Evaluation of ATOMIC for Dietitians

Project title: 

Evaluation of ATOMIC for Dietitians 

Project duration:

6 weeks, with a minimum of 20 hrs/wk

Preferred commencement date:

27 November 2017

Description:

The Institute for Urban Indigenous Health (IUIH) Ltd is a not-for-profit, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Controlled Organization which leads the planning, development and delivery of comprehensive primary health care to Indigenous communities of the South East Queensland Region. The IUIH and its Members serve Australia’s second largest but fastest growing Indigenous population. IUIH’s mission is to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in South East Queensland have access to comprehensive, high quality and timely primary health care services, integrated with the broader health and human services system.

The Australian Therapy Outcome Measure for Indigenous Clients (ATOMIC) has been utilized at the Institute for Urban Indigenous Health (IUIH) to develop goals for therapy sessions and review the impact of the therapy on the progress of individual in both Occupational Therapy and Speech Pathology.

This project aims to roll-out the ATOMIC for use with Dietitians and to explore its utility and validity in measuring outcomes for urban Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. The project will involve some data collection (interviews) and analysis of existing data.

Expected outcomes and deliverables:

The student will gain skills in data collection and data analysis and may have the opportunity to contribute to a publication from their research.

The successful student/s will be required to complete an induction with the student placement coordinator at IUIH’s Windsor head office before commencing their placement. Additionally, all project students will be asked to present their projects to the team in a monthly research forum, and to provide a project report, once they have completed the project.

Suitable for:

The student needs to be able to work independently and proactively and follow directives effectively. Students will be given some cultural awareness training and will get the most out of their placement if they come with an ability and willingness to be flexible, reflect on their own values and culture and humility to learn.

This project is open to applications from UQ enrolled students with a background in nutrition & dietetics or similar fields.

Primary Supervisor:

Professor Sandra Capra and Dr Kate Odgers-Jewell (IUIH)

Further info:

Prospective applicants may wish to contact Professor Sandra Capra or Dr Kate Odgers-Jewell for further details.

 

Reconciliation at UQ: Student Perspectives and Health Wellbeing Impacts

Project title: 

Reconciliation at UQ:  Student Perspectives and Health Wellbeing Impacts

Project duration:

8 - 10 weeks negotiable, with a minimum of 20 hrs/wk

Preferred commencement date:

11 December 2017, negotiable with supervisor

Description:

Reconciliation Australia is the peak body in Australia whose vision is “for everyone to wake to a reconciled, just and equitable Australia” (Reconciliation Australia 2017).  Reconciliation Action Plans (RAPs) are a key, evidence-based program in which Reconciliation Australia supports organisations to develop and implement a framework for reconciliation within their context.  A project manager commenced in February 2017 to develop UQ’s first RAP and the Vice-Chancellor and President has agreed to champion the RAP.

Reconciliation Australia has conducted the biennial National Australian Reconciliation barometer since 2008.  The Barometer measures reconciliation across five dimensions – race relations, equality and equity, unity, institutional integrity and historical acceptance.

This project seeks to

  • Better understand Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous Australians health and wellbeing impacts of reconciliation.
  • Engage and investigate student perspectives of reconciliation at UQ.

Expected outcomes and deliverables:

Scholars are required to:

  • Conduct a literature review on the impacts of the principles of reconciliation (e.g. as an anti-racism movement, etc) in higher education on the health and well-being of Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous Australians.
  • With guidance from the RAP Student Working Group and Project Manager (Indigenous Engagement Initiatives)
    • Design, recruit and facilitate a UQ students focus group at each of the three campuses i.e. Gatton, Herston and St Lucia.
    • Design and run a reconciliation interactive activity e.g. reconciliation wall at each campus during O-week and the first week of semester.

Through these expected outcomes you will learn qualitative research skills and greater understanding of reconciliation in higher education and its impacts on health and wellbeing.   You may also generate an opportunity to be an author on a publication.

Suitable for:

This project is suitable for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students and non-Indigenous students enrolled in a UQ program who are motivated and have an interest in reconciliation in higher education, and its impacts on the health and well-being of Indigenous Australians.

A background in health and/ or social sciences will be an advantage.

Primary Supervisor:

Nell Angus - Office of the Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Indigenous Engagement)

Further info:

Prospective applicants may wish to contact the UQ Poche Centre for further details.

 

Jordan Cory
As part of her Summer Research Project, Jordan evaluated and redeveloped a tool for occupational and speech therapists working with Indigenous school children on a range of difficulties that make learning or school participation challenging.