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UQ Update

University of Queensland

Monday 23 February 2015


Events   Sustainability   Lifestyle   Development   Volunteers

Vice-Chancellor’s Open Sessions for Staff: final chance to register

Reminder to all staff of the invitation to attend a staff forum, to receive an update on University developments. The VC’s address will launch the Enhancing Systems and Services Program (ESS). Following on from the Culture Survey, UQ is committed to supporting measures that will make a tangible difference to the working environment of students and staff.

As part of UQ’s Strategic Plan 2014 – 2017, ESS seeks to strengthen UQ by allowing more resources to be directed to the academic purpose. In transforming how we operate through a shared commitment to better services, ESS aims to enhance the student experience and to better enable staff to deliver and support teaching and research. ESS is a significant opportunity and seeks the participation of staff from across the University.

The sessions will also be live-streamed; to register and for further details visit Enhancing Systems and Services.   


UQ International Women's Day Event

The Equity and Diversity section of the Human Resources Division invite staff to the UQ International Women’s Day Event on Friday 6 March.

This year’s International Women’s Day theme is Make It Happen, encouraging effective action for advancing and recognising women. The highlight will be presentations from three prominent UQ women on their career journey, followed by a Q and A panel session.

The event will be held on Friday 6 March from 12.30pm–2.30pm in Seminar Room 202, Learning and Innovation Building. A light lunch will be served, and gluten free and vegetarian options will be available.

RSVP to Lu Apruzzese on ext. 52055 by close of business Monday 2 March. Spaces are limited.

Implementation of day cleaning at UQ

After a successful three month trial, day cleaning will be implemented across UQ with the Staff House Road Precinct commencing on Monday 2 March. Prior to implementation in each precinct, staff will be invited to an information session to ask questions and identify and raise issues that relate to the scheduling of their space. Staff in the Staff House Road Precinct are being invited to attend an information session on Friday 27 February from 10am–11am, in Room 351/352, Building 47A. RSVP to clean@pf.uq.edu.au by Wednesday 25 February. For more information, click here

New Colombo Plan information session for staff

Representatives from DFAT will host an information session for staff on the 2016 New Colombo Plan guidelines. In the 2015 round, approximately $8 million in mobility grants was made available to Australian universities to support study and internships across the Indo-Pacific. The information session will be held on Monday 2 March from 1.30pm–3.30pm in the Don Carruthers Meeting Room, Level 5, Dorothy Hill Library, Hawken Engineering Building. It is recommended that staff interested in learning about New Colombo Plan funding opportunities or developing a short-term mobility program attend. RSVP by Wednesday 25 February to ncp.secretariat@dfat.gov.au.

Nominations for the inaugural UQ Awards for Excellence opening soon 

The UQ Awards for Excellence provide an opportunity for all UQ staff to acknowledge and celebrate the achievements of individuals and teams who demonstrate behaviours that reflect and support the University’s values. These Awards celebrate staff achievement across all levels of the organisation, regardless of position.

The award categories are UQ Award for Excellence in: Leadership, Service, Innovation, Equity and Diversity, and Wellness and Safety. Online nominations for the Awards open on Monday 2 March.

For further information about the awards and the nomination process, please visit the Reward and Recognition website or contact Lynette Dawson on ext. 53238.

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Queensland Alliance for Agriculture and Food Innovation Science Seminars

Professor Mario Herrero, Chief Research Scientist and OCE Science Leader CSIRO Agriculture Flagship Honorary Professor at QAAFI, will present a seminar on “Sustainable intensification of smallholder mixed crop-livestock systems”. The seminar will be held on Tuesday 24 February from 12pm–1pm in the Level 3 Seminar Room, Building 80. For more information, click here or contact Luba Hickey.

Centre for Marine Science TalkFest

The Centre for Marine Science (CMS) comprises one of the largest and most diverse group of marine scientists and engineers in Australia. The Centre hosts a bi-annual conference TalkFest with the intention of increasing communication and collaboration among UQ researchers and external marine scientists. The next TalkFests will be held on Friday 27 February from 1pm-6pm in Room 348, Physiology Lecture Theatres. For more information, click here. To RSVP for this event please email m.mihaljevic@uq.edu.au.

Global Change Institute Food Security Seminar Series

Professor Peter Gresshoff, Director of the Centre for Integrative Legume Research, will present a seminar on “Legume research - symbiotic nitrogen fixation and food sustainability”. It will explore the cutting edge of technology in enhancing the use of biological nitrogen fixation to ensure sufficient, nutritious, sustainable food for humanity. The seminar will be held on Tuesday 3 March from 1pm–2pm in Room 275, GCI Building. For more information, contact Jane O'Sullivan.

Telehealth Forum: Telehealth Activities in Telstra Health

The UQ Centre of Research Excellence (CRE) in Telehealth will host a forum presented by Dr David Doolan, Chief Health Information Officer, Telstra Health. This presentation will outline Telstra Health’s telehealth activities, in particular the importance of telehealth in the organisation's strategy and its current telehealth developments. This forms part of the CRE’s monthly forum series. The forum will be held on Friday 6 March from 11am–12pm in Room 2060, TRI, PA Hospital. A light lunch will be served following the presentation. For more information, click here or contact Dominique Bird.

UQ Environment Collective presents Gasland II - film screening and guest speaker

Are you interested in the controversial topic of coal seam gas mining, the Lock the Gate Alliance or the UQ Environmental Collective? This is an opportunity to meet like-minded people and chat about important environmental issues over a pizza buffet. Join the UQ Environmental Collective and special guest Drew Hutton on Tuesday 10 March from 6pm for a free screening of Gasland II, the explosive follow-up to the Oscar-nominated Gasland. Register your interest, along with any dietary requirements here. For more information, click here.

UQ Early Career Teaching and Learning Grants Writing Workshop

The 2015 Early Career Teaching and Learning Grant scheme is now open. For more detailed information on the Early Career Teaching and Learning Grant scheme, including closing dates and guidelines outlining the selection process, click here. The Institute for Teaching and Learning Innovation (ITaLI) will hold a grants writing workshop on Thursday 12 March, from 1pm–2pm in Room 202A, Learning Innovation Building. Anyone interested in a UQ Early Career Teaching and Learning Grant is encouraged to attend. RSVP to Michele Wirt.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show at the Schonell Theatre

Kristian Fletcher Events presents The Rocky Horror Picture Show. Head to the Schonell Theatre on Friday 20 March at 7.30pm for an 8pm screening of the 1975 musical classic with the infamous Cards 4 Sorrow live floorshow. See the cult movie brought to life with floorshow performers, audience participation and dancing in the aisles. Dress up and be prepared to do the Time Warp again. Tickets are $16 per person plus booking fee. This is a 15+ event. Book online, or purchase at the box office on the night. For more information, click here

Other upcoming events

QBI Neuroscience Seminar: Insect Ocelli: Eyes for every function - Results of traditional and X-ray CT techniques (24.02.15)

Australian Awards for University Teaching Workshop (25.02.25)

School of Civil Engineering Distinguished Lecture series: Isogeometric methods for numerical simulation in geomechanics, by Prof. Gernot Beer (02.03.15)


More UQ events »


UQ in the media

The media monitoring service provides a broad collection of external media articles where UQ is mentioned. This information is gathered and updated daily by the Office of Marketing and Communications. For more information:

  1. Subscribe to the daily Media Summary, or

  2. If you are a Marketing or Communications staff member, you may be able to make arrangements to access the Media Monitors portal directly by emailing communications@uq.edu.au.



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Keeping our wildlife wild

Many visitors enjoy feeding UQ’s resident birds and other wildlife, but the effects of this seemingly generous act can be harmful to many species and their habitat. Regular feeding can cause pollution problems in the environment due to the excess nutrients entering the system, and an unhealthy diet can lead to poor nutrition and disease. Unnatural and sometimes aggressive behaviour has been observed in wildlife fed by humans, and overcrowding can result, overwhelming the local ecosystem. There are many ways to enjoy local wildlife without adversely impacting on their wellbeing. More information is available on the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection website.

EcoTip: How can I help keep our wildlife wild?

  1. Enjoy local wildlife by viewing from a distance
  2. Pick up the camera and leave the bread at home when visiting the park  
  3. Create a wildlife habitat in your backyard by growing suitable native plants
  4. Visit a responsible zoo with scheduled feeding times for visitors
  5. Leave no trace of your outdoors visit by disposing of all litter appropriately

Sustainability Poster Series

The Sustainability Office has designed 26 posters to raise awareness about sustainability and provide the University community with practical tips on what they can do to help. The posters cover topics including energy efficiency, waste reduction, recycling, green events and many more. Posters can be viewed on the Sustainability website and added to foyer screens or printed out and placed in common areas.

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UQ Wellness

  • Good Morning Yoga7 week course, Tuesday 7.30am-8.30am at the UQ Centre - details and registration.
  • Feldenkrais ­ Awareness through Movement ­–6 week course, Wednesday 5.15pm ­ 6.15pm at the UQ Centre - details and registration.
  • Fitness Passport–we are investigating an added initiative to UQ Wellness, which will provide affordable gym and pool membership as well as other benefits to employees and their immediate families. We need feedback before we can progress with this. Please take two minutes to complete the survey

For more information on current health and wellness opportunities, visit the UQ Wellness website or contact Vicki McNabb.

Kickstart your fitness

Kickstart your fitness with UQ Sport’s commitment-free 7 day Gold Membership trial for just $15. The trial includes:

  • Access to our gym and pool all day
  • Free tennis court hire (7am-5pm and 9pm-11pm weekdays)
  • More than 70 group fitness and swim squad classes per week

If you decide to buy a membership when your trial is finished, you’ll get your $15 back, terms and conditions apply. For more information and to get started, click here.

Know your EAP: online assistance and support with work and life issues - anywhere, any time

eapdirect® is part of UQ’s contract with our EAP provider, Davidson Trahaire Corpsych to provide support to staff. It is a secure, confidential online platform that provides information across the range of issues we face in life. eapdirect® has hundreds of articles on topics ranging from relationships and family management through to workplace challenges and parenting. In addition, there are interactive self-assessments covering areas such as conflict, drug and alcohol use and communication skills, as well as videos, podcasts, and infographics and a suite of financial learning games and modules, with new resources added monthly. eapdirect® provides for secure, confidential online EAP counselling, online managerAssist® and online moneyAssist™. This is not a chat room style, but rather individual, professional advice and coaching that is completely confidential for managers, UQ staff and their families. To find out how to log in via the UQ portal visit the Human Resources website

10-week personal training student-delivered program at St Lucia campus

Healthy adults aged 18–55 with no previous injury and minimal physical activity experience are invited to undertake an eight-week personal training program delivered by third-year exercise science and exercise physiology students. The program includes one initial assessment session, eight weekly one-hour gym-based individualised sessions, a final assessment and home-based exercise prescription. Clients will receive a written report with their assessment, results and progress during the program. Programs are run at the St Lucia campus from the start of March through to the end of May. The program costs $200, and registrations are now open. For more information, and to express an interest in registering, click here or email hmns.pt@uq.edu.au

Adult Autism Spectrum Group

A group exists for adults on the Autism Spectrum in a non-threatening environment. This non-clinical group meets for adults to discuss and find friendship twice a month. Click here or phone Garry Burge on 0431 444 512. 

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Online seminar: Enhancing student learning outcomes with simulation-based pedagogies

Associate Professor Pierre Benckendorff, will present an online seminar that will explore the techniques used to assess the learning outcomes of online business simulations. These simulations are complex learning tools designed to teach strategy, competitive analysis, finance, cross-functional alignment, and the selection of tactics to build a successful business. One of many tools in the educator's tool kit, their effectiveness depends on the use of appropriate pedagogy and assessment to support student learning. The seminar will be hosted by Mathew Hillier on Wednesday 4 March from 5pm-6pm. For more information and to register, click here.

Sponsored Mandarin learning for UQ staff – registrations open

The Confucius Institute at UQ, in conjunction with the Institute of Modern Languages (IML), is offering fully sponsored places to UQ staff to engage in short-term Mandarin study. This important learning opportunity is aimed at participants new to Mandarin, providing a sound language base for further study. The course will be held on Wednesdays, from 4.30pm–6.30pm, starting on Wednesday 11 March for 8 weeks. The sessions will be held at IML and are free of charge for UQ staff. For more information, email business.manager@confucius.uq.edu.au.

MFSAS – Statistics Training Workshops

The Institute for Social Science Research (ISSR) offers professional development courses in statistics, Leximancer and qualitative research, from beginner's to advanced levels. For the full schedule, see the MFSAS (Methods for Social Analysis and Statistics) website. Upcoming workshops include:

eLearning workshops

ITS is offering a range of practical workshops on eLearning tools during 2015. A description of each workshop, dates and registration is available on the Staff Development website.

  • Learn.UQ Basics - Tuesday 24 February, St Lucia
  • Learn.UQ Retention Centre - Wednesday 25 February, St Lucia
  • Desktop recording: iSpring - Thursday 26 February, St Lucia
  • Learn.UQ Grade Centre - Friday 27 February, St Lucia
  • Learn.UQ Basics - Tuesday 11 March, St Lucia

Staff development update

  • Demonstrating Leadership Behaviours – This course is for staff at HEW levels 5 to 7 who are serious about their learning and are prepared to make changes to the way they work with others. This workshop will run over three non-consecutive days on Monday 16 March, Tuesday 17 March and Tuesday 5 May. You must attend all three dates. Full course details are included on the registration (EOI) form. 
  • Leading & Managing Self and others –This course is designed for Academic and Professional staff HEW levels 8+, undertaking team leadership activities. This course runs over 3 non-consecutive full days on Thursday 12 March, Thursday 9 April and Thursday 15 May. You must commit to attending all three sessions. Full course details are included on the registration (EOI) form.
  • Self-leadership –This course is for staff at HEW levels 1 to 4 who are serious about their learning and are prepared to make changes to the way they work with others. This course will run over three non- consecutive days on Thursday 16 April, Thursday 23 April and Thursday 30 April. You must attend all three dates. Full course details are included on the registration (EOI) form.

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 Study about

Vibration therapy and athletic performance study

Fit males aged 18-25 who engage in moderate activity several times a week are sought to participate in a study measuring the effect of vibration therapy on improved athletic performance. The study will consist of a 30 minute supervised session for four consecutive days with a two week rest before a further four consecutive days. Participants will be reimbursed with a guaranteed $50 Visa gift card and the opportunity to earn a further $200–$250 dependent on performance. Details: Bridie Morcombe.

Help test a new virtual reality home training device for neck pain

A virtual reality device has been developed for assessment and training of neck movement. It provides games designed to improve the smoothness, speed and accuracy of neck movement. It is interactive, motivating, pain distracting and functional. Researchers are seeking people aged 18–60 who have had at least two months of neck pain and disability to investigate the effect of this home-based training in people with neck pain. Details: Kate Croft.

Do you suffer from anterior knee pain?

Participants aged 23–45 with current anterior knee pain are sought to participate in a new study. Participants should not currently be receiving treatment, although they can have had previous treatment. People who have other neurological or musculoskeletal conditions that might affect their walking, or people who have received surgery for their knee pain are not eligible. The experiment involves placing reflective markers on the participants' feet, legs, hips and back, and participants will be asked to walk on a treadmill in flat and downhill mode for less than 10 minutes total. The experiment will take between 60–90 minutes, and participants are asked to wear shorts and a t-shirt (that may need to be partially lifted to place reflective markers appropriately). Participants will be reimbursed $20. Details: Jade Dixon.

Planning a weekend away?

We are seeking volunteers for a study on the restorative impacts of short breaks and vacations. If you are planning a weekend away, and are willing to participate in the study, please click here to register your interest. Each participant will receive two movie tickets. Details: Jan Packer

Do you think you have good posture at a computer? 

Office workers who are not research higher degree students, use a computer for more than 20 hours a week and are free of neck pain are needed for this study. Experts are investigating the impact of individual and workplace factors on the health of the neck and shoulders. Participants will receive free assessments of their workstation, physical capacity and work posture. All testing is conducted at UQ. Participants will recieve a $50 voucher at the end of the study. Details: Deokhoon Jun.

Balance performance in middle-aged adults

Healthy males and females aged 43–58, who are free from any musculoskeletal, sensory or neurological diseases/injuries are sought to take part in a study exploring balance control. Individuals will perform a series of standing balance tasks on one occasion only. Testing will take approximately 45 minutes and be conducted at the St Lucia campus. Details: Dr Anna Hatton (3365 4590). 

Friend and family sharing in social media 

Volunteer groups of 3-5 family and/or friends are sought for focus groups on sharing in social media. The sessions will run for approximately 90 minutes, and will explore topics such as social sharing and privacy. Participants will be reimbursed $20 each. Details: Liam Pomfret.

The neuroscience of risk taking

Males aged 20–35, with no history of mental illness, not currently taking any medication, and with no metal implants are sought for a new study. The aim of this study is to explore the neural networks involved in risky decision making and how these networks can be influenced by different forms of visual media. It will involve completing a five-minute online questionnaire to assess eligibility and an fMRI brain scan, which will take approximately one hour. Participants will be reimbursed $40. Details: Samuel Fynes-Clinton.

Free nutrition and exercise training for overweight children and adolescents 

Overweight children and adolescents aged 7–16 are needed for this study, which will include 10 free sessions with an accredited dietitian, supervised exercise training and health assessments. The study will involve twice weekly exercise sessions for 12 weeks, as well as fitness testing, body composition scans, heart and blood vessel assessment. Participants will receive their health and fitness results. Sessions are held at the St Lucia campus and free parking is provided. Details: Click here or contact Katrin Dias (3346 7767).

Do you or someone you know have asthma? 

Researchers are seeking volunteers 16 years and over, who use a preventative asthma inhaler to complete a 15-20 minute survey online. This study aims to explore how beliefs about medicines and asthma affect whether we use our preventer inhalers. Details: Click here or contact Holly Ross


Low back pain frequently asked questions survey

We are interested in what questions people would like answered about their low back pain. This information will inform the development of a 'Frequently Asked Questions' section of a website under development. Anyone who has or has had low back pain and is over 18 can contribute to our study by completing an online survey. All participants have the opportunity to go into the draw for an iPad Mini. Details: click here.

Have you previously sprained your ankle?

Volunteers aged 18-65 who have previously sustained at least two ankle sprains are needed for a study investigating walking and balance. Participants will walk on a treadmill and perform a balance test with and without wearing an ankle brace or tape. Testing will take approximately 45 minutes and will be conducted at St Lucia. Details: Michelle Smith.

Exploring the role of alcohol in community football clubs

Community level sport contributes positively to individuals mental, physical and social health. Unfortunately, sport participation has at times been associated with drinking harmful amounts of alcohol. In some instances, alcohol consumption levels have been reported to be higher in sporting clubs than in general society. The aim of the project is to explore the rituals and behaviours related to alcohol consumption. The project will report on overall alcohol consumption behaviours across a number of clubs. Individuals who work on executive boards or committees of management at football (soccer, rugby, league, AFL) clubs to are sought to discuss the possibility of working with their club throughout the project. Details: Holly Thompson.

Lifting for science

Participants aged 18–30 with no history of biceps brachii or elbow injury are needed for a study into biceps growth. The study will consist of a supervised one-hour session every week for 16 weeks, with eight weeks of biceps curls followed by eight weeks of rest (no biceps curls). Participants will be reimbursed with a $100 Visa gift voucher. Details: Christian Than.

Motor learning and brain stimulation study

Volunteers aged 18–35 are sought to participate in a study examining how specific brain areas contribute to our ability adapt to changes in sensory feedback. Participation involves a one–hour session where participants will be asked to reach towards targets as very weak electrical currents are applied to brain areas of interest. This is a safe, non-invasive method of temporarily changing brain excitability. $15 travel reimbursement will be provided. Details: Click here or email l.leow@uq.edu.au.

Nutrients for depression study

Researchers are seeking people who are currently taking an antidepressant but still have some ongoing symptoms such as low mood, fatigue, irritability or sleep issues. Psychiatry researchers are conducting an 8-week study testing a combination of nutrient-based supplements, such as omega 3 and zinc, for depression. Details: Laura Adams (3365 5572).

Seeking teenagers and parents for bullying survey

Teenagers and their parents are invited to take part in a short survey on bullying. The survey will take approximately 5–10 minutes to complete, and researchers are interested to hear your ideas on this important topic. Details: Click here or contact Hannah Thomas.

Do you have an overweight cat?

Researchers are seeking owners of overweight and obese cats for a weight-loss study based at the UQ Vets Clinical Studies Centre at the Gatton campus. Overweight and obese cats are more likely to develop diabetes mellitus than cats of a healthy weight and so the study will investigate the effect of different diets on weight-loss and blood glucose levels in overweight and obese cats. Each enrolled cat will receive a full health check (including physical examination and blood and urine tests), an 18-week weight-loss program, and premium quality food for the duration of the study, at no cost. Owners must be able to bring their cat for the first consultation and then for re-checks at the Gatton campus every one to two weeks. Details: Michelle Story.

Looking for treatment for knee pain?

Participants aged 18–40 with pain at the front of the knee that is made worse walking on stairs/hills/squatting are needed for a study of two treatments that have been shown to be beneficial. Eligible participants will receive either hip exercises or foot orthoses at a physiotherapy clinic, and be measured on their outcomes over three months. All treatment costs will be covered. Details: email sirph@uq.edu.au.

Do you have acute low back pain?

People aged 18-50 who have experienced low back pain in the past week are needed to participate in a 12 month study. Volunteers will be required to attend four sessions at the St Lucia campus, and will be reimbursed for their participation. To determine your suitability please complete this intake questionnaire. Details: email longlbp.ccrespine@uq.edu.au.


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