UWA Forward is the University of Western Australia's weekly staff news bulletin. It is published every Wednesday via all-staff email.

Will this young man's 'prospective' memory be affected?

The sobering consequences of a night drinking

Thursday, 26 July 2012

By Tobias Grey

Science Communication student

Most of us like a drink once in a while. We accept the consequences and enjoy the benefits - the buzz and relaxation - at the cost of your inhibitions and sometimes your good reputation.

We all seem to think we understand the costs of alcohol use, but an ongoing study on memory and alcohol use from UWA PhD student Helen Shield has begun to turn up some worrying findings.

Setting up the control monitors on the Physics building

Long term health links with air quality

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Most people understand that air pollution is bad for your health, but there has been little long-term research to prove it.

These sheep could help wean you off addictive drugs

Tired? Stressed? You’ll feel better with sheep

Thursday, 26 July 2012

By Caitlin Dunlap

Science Communication student

For years, insomniacs have sworn by lavender oil as the secret ingredient to a good night's sleep while others believe that counting sheep helps those who struggle to drift off.

Now scientists at UWA have put them together and, by using sheep of varying demeanours, they have discovered another side to lavender oil that is more than sweet dreams and a peaceful night's sleep.

Janine Murray

Swimming, twirling and whacking our way to gold

Thursday, 26 July 2012

WA has a proud international hockey tradition, with UWA students and graduates taking a significant role in major achievements over the past decade.

Anna Johansson receives her award for medical research

Medical research reaps its rewards

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Seven was a lucky number for young UWA medical researchers last month.

Seven of the major prizes awarded during Medical Research Week went to UWA researchers and graduate students. And seven of the eight new research grants from the WA Department of Health were won by UWA staff.

Anna Nowak, RoseMarie Vojakovic and Siri Siriwardene

Stepping towards a cure

Thursday, 26 July 2012

By Sally-Ann Jones

Even if researchers got only "half an inch" closer to a cure for mesothelioma thanks to money raised on a 600km charity walk, Derryn Carnaby would be happy.

Carlos Duarte believes that humans have significant coastal connections

Ocean ties

Thursday, 26 July 2012

"We are tied to the ocean," said the late US President, John F Kennedy. "And when we go back to the sea ... we are going back from whence we came."

Indigenous Scholar Sam Shepherd (New York Marathon - Trevor Collens)

Celebrating the achievements of Indigenous Australians

Friday, 29 June 2012

With NAIDOC Week to be celebrated throughout Australia from the first Sunday in July, it is fitting to reflect on our University's commitment to Indigenous Australians and to building a dynamic partnership between the University, the Aboriginal community and the broader society.

Partners in the salinity project talk with a local Iraqi farmer (Photo: ACIAR)

Saline insurgence

Friday, 29 June 2012

The cradle of civilisation is under threat - not just from violence and conflict, but from salty water and soil.

Kirrin Lund's research extended her 'family' by two alpacas

Finding new directions in food and resources

Friday, 29 June 2012

Climate change, biochar, bread quality, nutrition for alpacas and the role of farmer groups could hardly be more diverse subjects.

And they represent the huge range of research being done within the UWA Institute of Agriculture.

Matariki group - Otago

Partners take on the big issues

Friday, 29 June 2012

Research leaders from seven international universities - the Matariki Network - have mapped a path for the future.

Len Zuks with his painting, Through The Trees

Len flies the flag for Australia

Friday, 29 June 2012

Len Zuks, carpenter and welder in UWA's building workshop, was busy on campus, sporting his grey overalls as one of the University's Mr Fixits.

At the same time, Len Zuks the internationally renowned artist had two paintings on display in Lebanon: the first as part of a United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) celebration of World Day for Cultural Diversity; the other as part of a London Olympics exhibition in Beirut.

John Melville-Jones is probably debating a point of grammar with Vice-Chancellor

He could never be described as retiring

Friday, 29 June 2012

Fifty-five years to the day from when he took up a position at UWA, Winthrop Professor John Melville-Jones went off the University payroll.

Dorothy Hahne, Michael Clarke and George Yeoh with the new equipment

A big boost for biology

Friday, 29 June 2012

New equipment at UWA will help our scientists to tackle some of society's big challenges in health, food production and the environment.

Eileen Webb and Aviva Freilich

Home sweet home for seniors

Friday, 29 June 2012

A secure home is a top priority for most elderly people.

But security of tenure for seniors' housing is a problem in WA that is growing as the population ages.

Phil Hancock

Finding the excitement in accounting

Friday, 29 June 2012

Phil Hancock is Winthrop Professor of Accounting and Associate Dean Teaching and Learning in the Business School. He has been teaching for 39 years at university level, 20 of them at UWA. He has taught the breadth of the accounting curriculum to more than 6,000 students.

Paul McGurgan

“Teaching is a privilege”

Friday, 29 June 2012

Paul McGurgan is an academic obstetrician/ gynaecologist with research interests in teaching, medical professionalism, evidence-based medicine and simulation training. He is a keen advocate of medical student-led research. His goal in teaching is to fulfil his compatriot WB Yeats' idiom that ‘Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire'.

Johanna Badcock and Milan Dragovic

Stigma of mental illness still strong

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Despite the progress in many areas that characterises the 21st century, perceptions of mental illness are going backwards.

Professor Johanna Badcock from the School of Psychology and the Clinical Research Centre at Graylands Hospital, is examining stereotypes and mental illness. She has found that the stigma surrounding mental illness is still a major problem in society.

Colin MacLeod receives his award from Cynthia Murphy Senior VP Thomson Reuters

Emotions run high in academic research

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Psychologist Colin MacLeod's early research was considered ‘subversive' and his work part of a ‘revolution'.

But the Professorial Fellow in the School of Psychology and Founder and Director of the Elizabeth Rutherford Memorial Centre for the Advancement of Research on Emotion (CARE) is now one of Australia's most highly cited academics.

Richard Pengelly and Akram Azimi serve dahl and rice for dinner (by Shane Thaw)

Crossing boundaries to find justice

Thursday, 28 June 2012

A group of about 30 staff and students were excited as they sat down to a meal of four bean dahl last month.

It was not the simple food but the historic gathering that sparked their enthusiasm. It was the first time people from many different faiths (and no faith), had joined for dinner at UWA and initiated a discussion about working together to address issues of social justice and extreme poverty.