UON ranked in the world's top 100 for Education
The University of Newcastle (UON) Australia's education discipline has ranked in the top 100 in the world, confirmed by the QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017. The discipline has seen a significant improvement from last year’s ranking in the top 150 thanks to our world class education researchers and academics.
Education researchers at the University of Newcastle’s Priority Research Centre in Physical Activity and Nutrition are leading the fight against obesity by developing innovative education programs that are making real differences to the waistlines and lives of their participants.
By recognising the importance of tailoring health messages for specific demographic sub-groups, Professor Philip Morgan, Co-Director of the University of Newcastle's Priority Research Centre in Physical Activity and Nutrition, has achieved significant success with programs promoting weight loss, healthy eating and exercise, particularly with high-risk male cohorts that health educators have traditionally found difficult to reach.
His high-profile programs include the men's online weight-loss program SHED-IT (Self-Help, Exercise and Diet Using Information Technology); Healthy Dads, Healthy Kids, which encourages overweight fathers to be healthy role models for their children; and Workplace POWER (Preventing Obesity Without Eating Like a Rabbit), which targets overweight male shift workers.
His latest research has found that fathers are often a missing link in the effectiveness of childhood obesity prevention programs.
"Fathers have a particularly important influence on key behaviours such as their children's physical activity and dietary habits, which are linked to a child's weight status. Quality and quantity time spent with dad is important,” Philip said.
Physical education lecturer and researcher with the Faculty of Education and Arts Priority Research Centre in Physical Activity and Nutrition, Narelle Eather has also developed a physical activity intervention program designed for primary school students in years five and six.
Title ‘Fit 4 Fun’, Narelle was prompted to create the program during her time as a secondary school teacher when she observed her students’ lack of confidence in physical skills.
It’s designed to improve their skills, knowledge and attitudes towards physical activity – and boost fitness levels.
“Studies have shown that attitudes and behaviour developed in primary school carry through to adolescence and adulthood, which is why I decided to target my program at younger children – so we are affecting change before those attitudes are cemented,” Narelle said.