The UQ Poche Centre facilitates a range of research opportunities for undergraduate, honours and masters by coursework students through the upcoming Winter Research Program in June-July 2017.

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.

In conjunction with the UQ Student Employability Centre, the Poche Centre has a number of projects available for students interested in research. 

The UQ Winter 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 Winter Research scholars are eligible to apply for a scholarship for the duration of their research (between 4-6 weeks). A list of available projects can be found below. The Poche Centre is also offering students the option to suggest their own research project.

Broad requirements for the Poche Centre Winter 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 have completed at least one year of study at the time of application. 
  • Students should have a high level of academic achievement.

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

Apply Now

It is expected that scholars will work a minimum of 20 hours per week for at least four weeks. 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. 

What is the best evaluation model for community based Aged Care services?

Project title: What is the best evaluation model for community based Aged Care services?
Project duration: 4 - 6 weeks, with expectation of 20 hr/week (negotiable)
Preferred commencement date: 26 June 2017 (or up to 2 weeks prior to or following start date)
Background: The Institute for Urban Indigenous Health has developed a responsive Primary Health Care model aimed at improving the health and wellbeing of older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples living in the community. This project will consist of a systematic review to identify the best evidence for community based service evaluation leading on to the development of an evaluation protocol.
Expected outcomes & deliverables: 

This winter research project offers the student the opportunity to be involved in the development of an evaluation strategy for this service. The supervisory team will support the review process and provide mentorship in the analysis and writing for publication. The successful candidate will be supported in developing an action plan to ensure the project is completed on time.

Participants in this Winter Research Program will be invited to share their experiences at a Centre event to be held later in the year. 

Primary supervisor: A/Prof Christine Brown Wilson and A/Prof Jon Willis
Further information: Prospective scholars may wish to contact either A/Prof Christine Brown Wilson or A/Prof Jon Willis 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:

4 - 6 weeks, with expectation of 20 hr/week (negotiable)

Preferred commencement date: 26 June 2017 (or up to 2 weeks prior to or following start date)
Background:

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 & 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.

Participants in this Winter Research Program will be invited to share their experiences at a Centre event to be held later in the year. 

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 

Further information: Prospective applicants may wish to contact Dr Steven Rynn for further information or clarification. 

High Intensity Interval Training in Cardiac Rehabilitation

Project title: High Intensity Interval Training in Cardiac Rehabilitation     
Project duration:

4 - 6 weeks, with expectation of 20 hr/week (negotiable)

Preferred commencement date: 26 June 2017 (or up to 2 weeks prior to or following start date)
Background:

It is now well established that high intensity interval training (HIIT) can improve cardiorespiratory fitness by almost double that of moderate intensity continuous training, making it an effective way to improve outcomes in cardiometabolic disease. Less is known about HIIT’s effect on visceral fat, body composition, inflammation, and dietary behaviour.

Aim: To investigate whether HIIT is practical in a real world cardiac rehabilitation setting, and whether it also leads to greater improvements in visceral fat, body composition, inflammation, and dietary regulation.

Expected outcomes & deliverables: 

The successful applicant will:

  • Participate in trial organisation, exercise testing, body composition assessment, and dietary assessment and analysis.
  • Receive training in the processing and storage of bloods for later analysis.

Participants in this Winter Research Program will be invited to share their experiences at a Centre event to be held later in the year. 

Suitable for: This project is suitable for 2nd and 3rd year students, or Master level students, having completed nutrition science (NUTR2101 and /or 3201).
Primary supervisor:

Professor Jeff Coombes

Further information: Prospective applicants may wish to contact Prof Jeff Coombes for further information.

High-Intensity Interval training for participants with type 2 diabetes

Project title: High-Intensity Interval Training for participants with type 2 diabetes
Project duration:

4 - 6 weeks, with expectation of 20 hr/week (negotiable)

Preferred commencement date: 26 June 2017 (or up to 2 weeks prior to or following start date)
Background:

Type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2D) is a rapidly developing worldwide epidemic as a result of an ageing population, undefined genetic factors, and human behaviour and lifestyle changes as a result of urbanisation. Blood glucose control is a tightly coordinated process and relies on a balance between the rate of glucose appearance and the rate of glucose disappearance in the blood, however, in T2D hyperglycaemia is observed where there is an inability to maintain homeostatic blood glucose concentration.

Traditional exercise programs beneficial for T2D is of long-duration at moderate intensities. This can be a problem since lack of time is often cited as a limitation to participating in exercise. Therefore, it would be beneficial to have an exercise program that can gain metabolic adaptations similar to exercise of longer durations, but be performed in a shorter time. High-intensity interval exercise training (HIIT), which consists of repeated bursts of high-intensity activity, separated by periods of recovery or activity of a relatively lower intensity, provides an excellent alternative option to traditional exercise of long-duration.

Expected outcomes & deliverables: 

Compare the effects of HIIT and moderate intensity exercise on glycaemic control, fitness, strength, autonomic function, arterial stiffness, and vascular function in T2D. Successful applicants will have the opportunity to participate in the collection of physiological data in a clinical population including oxygen uptake during an exercise stress test, functional strength, Biodex, and arterial stiffness. There will also be opportunities to participate in trial organisation and in the well-being of a clinical population.

Participants in this Winter Research Program will be invited to share their experiences at a Centre event to be held later in the year. 

Suitable for: Students interested in gaining experience in a variety of physiological tests in human movement and working with individuals with chronic disease.
Primary supervisor:

Professor Jeff Coombes

Further information: Prospective applicants may wish to contact Prof Jeff Coombes or Trishan Gajanand for further information.

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

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

6 weeks, with expectation of 20 hr/week (negotiable)

Preferred commencement date: 26 June 2017 (or up to 2 weeks prior to or following start date)
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 Winter 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 sport was gradually and incrementally engaged in by Aboriginal people to create a collective identity, to test themselves on the football field and cricket pitch in Anglo-Australian competitions, and as a barometer of 20th-century race relations.

Aims:

This project 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 & 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 Indigenous Australian culture, develop skills in engaging with Indigenous 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 Indigenous groups and memory institutions to make appropriate documents and materials available

Participants in this Winter Research Program will be invited to share their experiences at a Centre event to be held later in the year. 

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 A/Prof Murray Phillips

Further information: Prospective applicants may wish to contact either Dr Gary Osmond or Associate Professor Murray Phillips for further information.

What does person centred care mean for older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples living in residential aged care?

Project title: What does person centred care mean for older Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples living in residential aged care? 
Project duration: 4 - 6 weeks, with expectation of 20 hr/week (negotiable)
Preferred commencement date: 26 June 2017 (or up to 2 weeks prior to or following start date)
Background:

Person centred care is a key philosophy across aged care services. It is not always clear what organizations mean by person centred care or whether this is always the most appropriate philosophy. This project explores the evidence for person centred care by undertaking a systematic literature review and concept analysis.  This review will lay the foundations to explore the meaning of person centred care for Indigenous older people, families and staff in residential aged care facilities.  

Expected outcomes & deliverables: 

This project will lead to a publication and the development of a proposal for an exploratory study to speak with older people, families, and professional caregivers in Indigenous run residential aged care facilities.

The supervisory team will support the review process and provide mentorship in the analysis and writing for publication. The successful candidate will be supported in developing an action plan to ensure project is completed on time.

Participants in this Winter Research Program will be invited to share their experiences at a Centre event to be held later in the year. 

Primary supervisor: A/Prof Christine Brown Wilson and A/Prof Jon Willis
Further information: Prospective scholars may wish to contact either A/Prof Christine Brown Wilson or A/Prof Jon Willis for further details. 

Indigenous Birthing in an Urban Setting Study

Project title:

Indigenous Birthing in an Urban Setting (IBUS) Study

Project duration: 4 - 6 weeks, with expectation of 20 hr/week (negotiable)
Preferred commencement date: 26 June 2017 (or up to 2 weeks prior to or following start date)
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.

Participants in this Winter Research Program will be invited to share their experiences at a Centre event to be held later in the year. 

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 or Professor Sue Kildea for further details. 

Other

Students also have the option to suggest their own research project. In order to apply for the Winter Research Program, you will need to provide the following:

  • Proposed supervisor
  • Proposed project title
  • Proposed duration and start date
  • Summary of proposed research including background, aim, activities and methods
  • Expected outcomes and deliverables of your participation in the Program

The Poche Centre is able to assist in this process. If you would like to discuss, please contact Rachel Bastin (Centre Manager) at poche@uq.edu.au.

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.