Healthy Development Adelaide The University of Adelaide Australia
Latest HDA News A Research & Innovation Cluster in South Australia  

text zoom: S | M | L

Healthy Development Adelaide

Ground Floor, Norwich Centre
55 King William Road
North Adelaide SA 5006

Telephone: +61 8 8313 8222


Follow us!

We are on Facebook and Twitter





You are here: 

Healthy Development Adelaide and Channel 7 Children’s Research Foundation PhD Excellence Award 2019 - NOW OPEN!



The PhD Excellence Award (formerly top-up scholarships) are $5,000 per annum for up to 3 years only to augment an Australian Government Research Training Program (AGRTP) Stipend Scholarship or equivalent competitive scholarship.


Applications are invited for PhD Research Scholarships in the areas of Healthy Development: disciplines include, but are not restricted to, biochemistry, biomedical engineering, biostatistics, demography, dentistry, economics, education, endocrinology, epidemiology, ethics, genetics, indigenous health, law, nutrition, obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatrics, pharmacology, physiology, politics, psychiatry, psychology, public health and sociology.

Preference will be given to projects with a multidisciplinary focus and that enhance more than one discipline within the research topic.

Applications are invited from domestic and international students who are newly commencing a PhD for the first time in 2019, and commencing between January – March 2019. Applicants should be eligible to enrol or be currently enrolled at either the University of Adelaide, University of South Australia or Flinders University in 2019, in addition applicants must satisfy each of the following criteria.

  • Applicants must hold a first class Honours degree or equivalent in a discipline relevant to the chosen field of study
  • Applicants hold an Australian Government Research Training Program (AGRTP) Stipend Scholarship or equivalent competitive postgraduate scholarship
  • Applicants must have a HDA member as their primary/principal supervisor
  • Research projects must be aligned with the Healthy Development theme

Conditions of Funding

Successful HDA Scholars will be required to partake in the HDA Research Training Program during their candidature. The program consists of a 20 hour practicum placement, mentoring component, and attending HDA events.

Annual renewal of top-up funding will also be subject to meeting your University postgraduate requirements, and subject to ongoing funding availability from the Channel 7 Children’s research Foundation.

Please submit the following documents by 5.00pm Tuesday 8 January 2019 to:
Healthy Development Adelaide, Anne Jurisevic at

  • Completed HDA Application (both in pdf and doc format in font Arial 12)
  • Current curriculum vitae
  • Australian Government Research Training Program (AGRTP) or equivalent competitive scholarship awarded
  • Academic transcript



HDA Scholars - seventh cohort

The following HDA scholars were awarded Channel 7 Children's Research Foundation PhD top-up scholarships 2018-2020.

Rosa Virgara
Alliance for Research in Exercise, Nutrition and Activity; School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia
Supervisors: A/Prof Carol Maher (primary), UniSA; Dr Anna Philips, UniSA; Dr Lucy Lewis, Flinders University and Ms Mandy Richardson, Out of School Hours Care Association of SA (OSHCsa) 

PhD Project: Physical activity, screen-time and wellbeing in Out of School Hours Services: how can we provide better programs for Australian children?. This project aims to develop and implement national guidelines for physical activity and screen time in OSHC programmes through the following stages: bring together a panel of experts from a variety of sectors including OSHC directors, members of peak national bodies, representatives from state education departments and expert researchers in child development and physical activity; to develop national guidelines for physical activity and recreational screen time in OSHC; develop an intervention program aimed to assist OSHC services to implement the guidelines; and conduct a pilot randomised control trial to determine the intervention program’s feasibility and effectiveness for improving physical activity and screen behaviours.

Fan Jia
School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, University of South Australia
Supervisors: Prof John Hayball (primary), UniSA; Dr Kerrilyn Diener, University of Adelaide and Dr Tamara Cooper & Dr Preethi Eldi, UniSA

PhD Project: Application of a new vaccine technology to protect children against multiple diseases painlessly and economically. This project will investigate using a new multiplication-defective vaccinia virus named, the Sementis Copenhagen Vector (SCV) as a vaccine platform to provide protective immunity against multiple diseases in a single-component vaccine. Multi-disease, single component vaccines offer improvements that will make manufacturing more economical and vaccination compliance achievable.

HDA Scholars - sixth cohort

The following HDA scholars were awarded Channel 7 Children's Research Foundation PhD top-up scholarships 2017-2019.

Jago Van Dam
Robinson Research Institute, University of Adelaide. Supervisors: Dr Julia Pitcher (primary), Dr Luke Schneider & Dr Mitchell Goldsworthy (University of Adelaide)

PhD Project: Effects of pro-inflammatory conditions of pregnancy on cortical physiology and neuroendocrine function in children and adolescents. This project aims to explore the effects of pro-inflammatory disorders of pregnancy on neuroendocrine function and cortical physiology in children and adolescents, and to further characterise the interactions between specific hormones and cortical synaptic plasticity, using non-invasive brain stimulation, immunohistochemical techniques, and functional assessments.

Joyce Haddad
School of Pharmacy and Medical Sciences, University of South Australia. Supervisors: Dr Rebecca Golley (primary), Dr Gilly Hendrie (CSIRO Food and Nutritional Sciences)

PhD Project: Can the Dietary Guideline Index (DGI) for Children and Adolescence be used as an effective monitoring and feedback intervention?. The Dietary Guideline Index (DGI; a reliable and valid measure of children's diet quality) suggests Australian children are not adhering to the dietary guidelines. Thus, it is essential to continue using this index as a monitoring and surveillance tool, to inform and evaluate interventions that focus on improving children's eating habits.


HDA Scholars - fifth cohort

The following HDA scholars were awarded Channel 7 Children's Research Foundation PhD top-up scholarships 2016-2018.

Victoria Branson
School of Psychology, University of Adelaide. Supervisors: Professor Deborah Turnbull (primary), Dr Matthew Dry (School of Psychology, UniA), Dr Edward Palmer (School of Education, UniA)

PhD Project: Designing, evaluating, and utilising a holistic measure of adolescent stress. This project aims to design and evaluate a neutral measure of adolescent stress that encompasses the positive and negative aspects of the construct. This novel measure will then be utilised to examine the role of stress in adolescents’ psychological and academic success.

Verity Booth
School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia. Supervisors: Professor Tim Olds (primary), Dr Grant Tomkinson (School of Health Sciences, UniSA), Dr Natasha Schranz (School of Health Sciences, UniSA), Prof David Lubans (Newcastle Uni)

PhD Project: Databases of physical activity in Australian children: an audit, an online repository, and recommendations on survey instruments. Working towards a standardised national survey system, this study aims to compile previous data collected on children's physical activity into an easily accessible online database, and establish which instruments provide the most valid and reliable responses.