Creative Ageing Symposium

30 Sep 2021 from 12:00am - 12:00am

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The Creative Ageing Research Team at the University Of Newcastle invites you to attend a one-day symposium that focusses on how engagement in creative activities can promote healthy brains and minds in older adults.

This event is held at the University Of Newcastle's City Campus and will provide you with an opportunity to hear about the latest research into the effects of creative arts engagement on brain and mind health in old age, sample creative activity workshops run by Hunter researchers and arts practitioners, and network with researchers in ageing, aged care sector professionals and end-users.

The program includes keynote talks by renowned researchers in the field, brief research presentations, and joint researcher and industry panel discussions. There will be brief demonstrations of interactive workshops in creative writing, song writing, dance and artmaking, as well as a special performance by elders who have participated in our creative courses. The day will close with a round table discussion to discuss aged care sector needs, research and implementation capabilities, and identify pathways for future collaborations.

We hope you will join us!

Visit: to find out more and register.

The event is hosted by the founding members of the Creative Ageing Research Team:

Keynote speakers

The symposium features presentations from some of the leading researchers in Australia including:

Professor Genevieve Dingle - University of Queensland

Genevieve Dingle is an Associate Professor in Clinical Psychology with a research interest in how groups and communities can influence mental health and wellbeing of adults of all ages. She is leading an ARC funded project to examine how social prescribing to community groups may help people to overcome loneliness and social isolation. She is an AHPRA registered clinical psychologist and supervisor with 20+ years practice experience in adult mental health and addiction treatment services. Her translational work includes the development of the Tuned In program (music listening based emotion regulation program for young people); and the Singing for Health program (group singing and song reminiscence for older adults in STARS hospital rehabilitation). Genevieve coordinates the UQ Music, Dance & Health interdisciplinary research group, is a member of the National Executive committee, Australian Music & Psychology Society (AMPS) and the Arts Health Network QLD (AHNQ) committee.

Professor Jane Davidson - University of Melbourne

Professor Jane Davidson is Head of Performing Arts at Faculty of Fine Arts and Music, University of Melbourne and current President of the Australian Music and Psychology Society. With over 200 scholarly contributions, grants and awards in Australia and overseas, her research interests embrace performance and expression, intercultural engagement and music for wellbeing outcomes. She was Editor of Psychology of Music (1997-2001), Vice-President of the European Society for the Cognitive Sciences of Music (2003-2006), President of the Musicological Society of Australia (2010-2011), and Deputy Director of the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions (2011-2018).

About the Creative Ageing Research Team

The Creative Ageing Research Team was founded by A/Prof Helen English from the School of Creative Industries and Dr Michelle Kelly and Prof Frini Karayanidis from the School of Psychology. It includes a growing group of researchers and students from the Schools of Creative Industries and Psychology at the University of Newcastle with expertise in music, artmaking, art design, as well as clinical psychology, cognitive ageing and neuroscience.

The team collaborates with researchers at the University of Melbourne and aims to develop evidenced-based creative activity programs that can promote wellbeing and brain health of older adults. Research already shows that sustained engagement in creative activities promotes wellbeing and can protect and even improve brain functioning. We seek to identify the key ingredients in creative activities that bring these benefits, to compare the effects of different creative activities and to ascertain optimum duration for engagement. The ultimate aim is to develop creative activities programs that are engaging and stimulating, but also suitable for implementation at scale both in person and remotely and in different living environments.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.