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ARC Linkage success

Researchers at Australian Catholic University (ACU) are celebrating after receiving two Australian Research Council (ARC) Linkage grants.

The first grant was awarded to Professor Rhonda Craven, Director of the Institute for Positive Psychology and Education (IPPE) for her research ‘Transforming Lives and Communities: Impact of Quality Indigenous Education’.

The second grant was awarded to Professor Peter Rendell, Director, Cognition and Emotion Research Centre (CERC), for his research ‘Acting with the Future in Mind’.

Professor Craven’s research, in partnership with Sydney boys’ school The Scots College, will explore the impact of Indigenous education programs in transforming lives and communities.

“There is a revolution in Australian education whereby private boarding schools are actively enabling Indigenous students to reap the rewards of a quality education,” Professor Craven said.

“While there is anecdotal evidence suggesting that these programs have long-term and far-reaching effects for the students that extend to Indigenous communities, non-Indigenous peers and the whole school community, the actual impact of and pathways through which these benefits are achieved is unknown.  Our research will address this,” said Professor Craven.

Professor Rendell’s research, in partnership with Catholic Homes Victoria, will investigate whether it is possible to enhance the prospective memory function of older adults.

“Prospective memory refers to memory for future intentions and is used in many daily activities that are critical for the maintenance of independence in late adulthood, such as remembering to take medication,” Professor Rendell said.

“My research will conduct the first controlled study to use prospective memory activities to directly train prospective memory using both major cognitive training approaches – process training and strategy training.  The results will have implications for clarifying how prospective memory function can be optimised in late adulthood – something which is important for healthy ageing.”

Professor Wayne McKenna, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research), said that ACU’s success this year demonstrates its strength in health and education research.

“These results highlight ACU’s commitment to supporting and developing excellence in research, particularly in two of our priority research areas of health and education,” he said.

Professor Craven’s research will be undertaken with IPPE colleagues, Dr Anthony Dillon, Professor Janet Mooney, Professor Alex Yeung, Associate Professor Cheryl Kickett-Tucker, Professor Alex Morin and Jonathan Samengo.

Professor Rendell’s research with be undertaken with CERC colleagues, Associate Professor Julie Henry, Professor Colleen Doyle, Professor Matthias Kliegel and Dr Nathan Rose.

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