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Medical Research Future Fund PhD Scholarship - Digital Models of Mental Health Care for Children and Adolescents

An opportunity is available for an Australian student with a psychology, mental health or public health background to commence a PhD with scholarship at the University of Southern Queensland to be aligned with the national research team working on the project “Translating evidence-based interventions into population-level digital models of care for child and adolescent mental health.”

Funded through the Australian government’s Medical Research Future Fund (MRFF), The University of Southern Queensland’s Centre for Health Research is leading a societally impactful research program that aims to translate knowledge about evidence-based psychological practice (regarding the detection, diagnosis, treatment and recovery of mental health conditions) into affordable, digital solutions for young people aged 7 to 17 years.  This project involves working in collaboration with partnering universities including the University of Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Australian National University and Federation University, as well as partnering government (e.g. West Moreton Hospital and Health Service, Darling Downs and West Moreton Primary Health Network) and non-government organisations (e.g. Kids Helpline and Stride). 

This is a unique opportunity for potential PhD students interested in the area of child and youth mental health and digital mental health service provision. Opportunities will be provided to collaborate with world-renowned researchers across Australia’s leading universities, to develop the successful applicant’s early career research profile, and to gain access to a wide range of formal and informal mentoring and team development opportunities.  

The University of Southern Queensland is currently looking to fund one research-only PhD candidate to contribute to a randomised control trial (RCT) or effectiveness trial examining the efficacy of an online, tailored intervention, that aims to treat symptoms of anxiety and/or depression amongst youth aged 7-17 years. The online platform is built; however, this project includes opportunities to answer research questions relating to strategies for enhancing engagement with and outcomes of the intervention. This may include strategies such as the use of adaptive intervention approaches that allow treatment to alter in dosage or content based on decision rules within the intervention, the provision of tailored feedback or support during the intervention or through stepped-care approaches, and/or brief interventions that consider ideal dosage for various problems/client types.

In collaboration with the various team members and supervisors, the successful candidate will be given the opportunity to develop their project aims in line with their individual experience and interests. This project will allow the candidate to develop his/her capabilities as a researcher and support them in contributing to research that makes a substantial difference in the lives of young people struggling with anxiety and depression. In doing so, the research team aims to help the candidate to develop a program of research that will ultimately result in publications within high impact Q1 journals and have meaningful impact and standing within the research community. 

$32,000 per annum for 3 years