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Research in Nursing, Midwifery and Social Sciences

CQUniversity Nursing research has been ranked at 'well above world standard' in the latest Excellence for Research in Australia exercise. This is a significant achievement for a regional university and with ongoing recruitment and promotion of research active staff, the School aspires to become one of the best research schools in Australia. The School of Nursing and Midwifery research activities involve researchers from a range of disciplines creating a comprehensive and multi-disciplinary approach. The research areas have a strong focus on applied research with direct benefit to regional and rural Australia but of national and international significance.

CQUniversity Nursing research aligns under three primary research strengths:

  • Nursing workforce, education and health-service delivery
  • Mental health
  • Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence

Research and research higher degree student supervision is focused on the following areas:

This focus draws on the current health agenda and priorities that will inform health care policy, health care practices, quality, and safety. Believing in the nexus of teaching and learning, research and practice; these researchers value working with others from education, industry partners, governments and the non-government organisations. The key focus areas include:

  • Health workforce development,
  • Quality and safety of health and aged care and Simulation and innovative education.

Key researchers include:

Current RHD students include:


Recent RHD graduates include:

Name/Qualification: Dr Martin Christensen - Doctor of Philosophy 2018
Thesis Title: "Men are from Mars": The lived experience of male nursing students at Regional University 
Supervisors: Associate Professor Anthony Welch (Principal), Associate Professor Jennie Barr (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Tracy Flenady - Doctor of Philosophy 2018
Thesis Title: Understanding transgression in respiratory rate observation collection methods in the Emergency Department: A classic grounded theory analysis
Supervisors: Professor Trudy Dwyer (Principal), Dr Judith Applegarth (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Naresh Rimal - Doctor of Philosophy 2018
Thesis Title: A Grounded Theory of Food Security in Nepal: Surviving Market Fundamentalism
Supervisors: Dr Wendy Hillman(Principal), Professor David Midmore (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Loretto Quinney - Doctor of Philosophy 2018
Thesis Title: The Lived Experience of Nurses who care for family members during acute exacerbations of chronic illness: A phenomenological approach
Supervisors: Professor Trudy Dwyer (Principal), Professor Ysanne Chapman (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Hanan Al-Shamaly - Doctor of Philosophy 2018
Thesis Title: The Nature of Caring by Nurses in an Intensive Care Unit (ICU): A Focused Ethnography 
Supervisors: Associate Professor Anthony Welch (Principal), Associate Professor Jennie Barr (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Annie Banbury - Doctor of Philosophy 2018
Thesis Title: Digital Futures: E-health, health literacy and chronic disease self-management skills for older people
Supervisors: Professor Lynne Parkinson (Principal), Professor Susan Nancarrow, Dr Jared Dart, Professor Len Gray (Associates)

Name/Qualification: Dr Ann Framp - Doctor of Philosophy 2017
Thesis Title: A Narrative Inquiry into the Experiences of One Family’s Predisposition to Hereditary Diffuse Gastric Cancer
Supervisors: Professor Margaret McAllister (Principal), Professor Trudy Dwyer (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Lisa Wirihana - Doctor of Philosophy 2017
Thesis Title: The Lived Experience of Nurse Academics at Satellite Campuses of Australian Universities: A Phenomenological Study
Supervisors: Associate Professor Anthony Welch (Principal), Professor Moira Williamson, Associate Professor Martin Christensen (Associates)

Name/Qualification: Dr Helen Donovan - Doctor of Philosophy 2017
Thesis Title: The Experience of the Double-degree Nurse Midwife in their Transition to Clinical Practice
Supervisors: Associate Professor Anthony Welch (Principal), Professor Moira Williamson (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Barbara O’Neill - Doctor of Philosophy 2017
Thesis Title: Aged care nursing staff management of the deteriorating resident and hospital avoidance: A Theory of Planned Behaviour Study
Supervisors: Associate Professor Trudy Dwyer (Principal), Professor Kerry Reid-Searl, Professor Lynne Parkinson (Associates)

Name/Qualification: Dr Irene Rogers - Doctor of Philosophy 2017
Thesis Title: Breaking Bread with the Dead: the Australian “Bluebird” Nurses of World War One seen through the Lens of Microhistory
Supervisors: Professor Margaret McAllister (Principal), Dr Wendy Madsen, Professor Donna Brien (Associates)

Name/Qualification: Dr Julie Shaw - Doctor of Philosophy 2017
Thesis Title: Constructing a Grounded Theory of Young Adult Health Literacy
Supervisors: Associate Professor Anthony Welch (Principal), Professor Moira Williamson (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Lorraine Thompson - Doctor of Philosophy 2017
Thesis Title: Coaching for Clinical Nurse Leaders: A Mixed Methods Study
Supervisors: Associate Professor Anthony Welch (Principal), Associate Professor Jennie Barr (Associate)

News Articles

Emu Park Lions Club Donates Second Silicone Puppet to Pup-Ed Program
CQUniversity has welcomed a second silicone puppet to its Pup-Ed (KRS Simulation) program, thanks again to the generosity of Emu Park Lions Club. Leo the silicone puppet will be used by Nursing students and health service organisations based in the Rockhampton region.

CQUni Partnership to Help Support the Growth of Wide Bay Research Culture
CQUniversity Nursing academics will soon provide research support to Wide Bay Hospital and Health Service (WBHHS) staff as part of a new collaborative partnership.

Helping Nepalese Boost Capacity for Qualitative Research
CQUniversity senior lecturers Dr Wendy Hillman and Dr Kylie Radel are recognised specialists in qualitative research methods who have been focusing on tourism potential in Nepal.

CQUni's Leading Role in Research Program to Transform Regional Healthcare
CQUniversity is leading a new research program designed to transform healthcare in the Central Queensland region. The Research Ready Grant Program features multi-disciplinary teams, mentorship, and collaboration between CQ Health and Hospital Services (CQHHS), CQUniversity and the University of Queensland Rural Clinical School.

EDDIE and Mask-Ed - A Perfect Match for Training in Aged Care
The EDDIE program, which stands for Early Detection of Deterioration in the Elderly, supports staff with resources and training in early detection and response to deteriorating health to help prevent hospitalisation. A team from CQUniversity is evaluating the implementation of the program.

The mental health nursing team continues to be sought after for research higher degree supervision and community engagement. Strong research links have led to important research output.

CQUniversity Australia is proud to have the first known full-time position in the world of an academic providing lived experience perspective of mental health challenge and recovery. This had led to a course called Recovery Approach in Mental Health. This course has been designed to introduce students to recovery approach to mental health care. Students will develop a comprehensive knowledge base of the principles and components of recovery, the significance of collaborative relationships with consumers of mental health services in order to promote individual recovery and the role of the nurse working within a recovery framework. Research continues to grow in this nationally significant area.

The two key focus areas in mental health are:

  • Mental health nursing, and
  • Lived experienced led mental health.

Key researchers include:

Current RHD students include:


Recent RHD graduates include:

Name/Qualification: Dr Brian Mayahle - Doctor of Philosophy 2018
Thesis Title: The implementation of Lean thinking in reducing waste, streamlining clinical processes, improving clinical access, efficiency and consumer outcomes in Queensland regional, rural and remote mental health services
Supervisors: Associate Professor Anthony Welch (Principal), Associate Professor Jennie Bar (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr June Alexander - Doctor of Philosophy 2017
Thesis Title: Using Writing as a Therapy for Eating Disorders: The Diary Healer and the process of using personal diary excerpts to write a book to assist people with eating disorders
Supervisors: Professor Margaret McAllister (Principal), Professor Donna Brien (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Ms Kerri Jackson - Master of Health Science 2016
Thesis Title: Words of wisdom from those who lived to tell the tale: A descriptive phenomenological study of re-engaging with life after attempted suicide
Supervisors: Associate Professor Anthony Welch (Principal), Dr Shane Hopkinson (Associate)

Name/Qualification: Dr Julie Bradshaw - Doctor of Philosophy 2016
Thesis Title: Façade of Success: Woogaroo Lunatic Asylum 1865-1869
Supervisors: Associate Professor Jennie Barr (Principal), Dr Wendy Madsen (Associate)

The Queensland Centre for Domestic and Family Violence Research is committed to undertaking applied research that supports the development of policy and practice in the field of domestic and family violence prevention with a particular, though not exclusive, focus on issues for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and rural and regional communities.

Key researchers in Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence include:

Current RHD students include:

Professor Trudy Dwyer introducing the EDDIE Research project Transcript
Mask-Ed - The new face of education Transcript