Graduate Research School Available Projects Innovative approaches to improving sun-safety in schools

Innovative approaches to improving sun-safety in schools

Title of Project

Innovative approaches to improving sun-safety in schools

Name of Advisor/s

Simone Harrison and Nathan Downs


College of Public Health, Medical & Veterinary Science

Summary of Project

A comprehensive sun-protection intervention will be conducted in Townsville primary schools and evaluated using pre- and post-intervention data for behaviours amenable to rapid change. Data collected will include %-student and role-model hat-use; %-student-spectators wearing shirts/hats at school carnivals; %-body-coverage of uniform; and school sun-safety policy score. Educational workshops will involve experiential learning supported through a customised digital platform (website, smartphone apps, immersive virtual reality) will be implemented and baseline data given to school P&C to influence change and promote use of existing community-resources (e.g. portable-marquee loan program). Yr5 students will learn to collect hat and carnival data using our apps. Post-intervention data will inform the implementation of a star-rating award scheme. This project is suitable for doctoral or masters students, although smaller components of the project can be modelled to suit other HDR programs including Hons or Grad Dip or even dissertation subjects within the MPH program by negotiation with the advisors.


Skin cancer; sun exposure; UV; behaviour; prevention; health promotion; education; school; children; melanoma; sunburn; role model; intervention; virtual reality; smartphone app; clothing; sunscreen; curriculum; sun; telescope; STEM.

Would suit an applicant who

has a background in public health, education, psychology, human behaviour, health promotion, nursing, public health, occupational therapy, workplace health and safety, immersive technologies.