"I hope my research helps communities develop greater empathy towards diverse ways of thinking.”

Maejoy Obach

Psychology student

Research in the School of Health and Human Sciences

The School of Health and Human Sciences supports innovative research in basic and applied sciences in health, with a particular emphasis on the needs of regional and rural communities.

Southern Cross University is committed to producing research and research training with global relevance and impact. Our large regional footprint - extending from Coffs Harbour on the NSW Mid North Coast through to Queensland’s Gold Coast - focuses the School’s research expertise to the promotion of health in individuals and communities, and to the delivery of focused, person-centred health care.

One of the great strengths of the School's research is its level of engagement with local and regional health service organisations, sporting institutions and peak bodies, private providers and local schools.

Increasingly, our research activities have focused on prevention and on understanding the physiological basis of the treatment and management of many chronic conditions.


Excellence in Research for Australia

In the latest independent assessment of research performance coming out of Australia’s higher education institutions, Southern Cross University’s School of Health and Human Sciences was ranked ‘above world standard’ and higher in four areas:

Excellence in Research Australia 2018 logo

‘Well above world standard’ (ERA top ranking of 5)

  • Complementary and Alternative Medicine
  • Nursing

‘Above world standard’ (ERA ranking of 4)

  • Medical and Health Sciences
  • Human Movement and Sports Science

Seeking participants

In improving community health and advancing human science research we sometimes need help.

We invite you to take part in research studies and trials seeking volunteers.

Volunteer for research studies and trials

Latest research report

The School encourages innovative and multidisciplinary approaches in health and human sciences research and research training.

Learn about the School’s research activities and achievements in the latest annual report.

2019 Annual SHHS Research Report

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Research degrees

Change people’s lives for the better and push the frontiers of health knowledge by undertaking a higher degree by research with the School of Health and Human Sciences, under the supervision of our research staff.

Visit Graduate School for details

Southern Cross health team pioneers new wound dressing technology where skin heals more quickly without stitches or staples. And NASA’s interested.

Learn more about Rapid Repar

Research Highlights

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Using psychology to help increase organ donation registrations

More than 900 Australians have registered an interest to donate their organs off the back of a psychology-focused research project led by Associate Professor Gail Moloney of Southern Cross University.

The Immediate Registration Opportunity Initiative is premised on respect for the diversity of beliefs about organ donation, offering face-to-face interaction so that people can consider their beliefs about organ donation, ask questions and raise concerns and fears without judgement. Those actions are coupled with an immediate on-the-spot opportunity to register a consent-to-donate with the Australian Organ Donor Register led a research team that added.

Registration rates achieved through this initiative consistently outperform current registration rates in Australia.

Learn more about using psychology to boost organ donations.

Christian Swann - Man kicking football on grassy sporting field

Scoring goals for youth mental health across the globe

A sport and mental health program co-developed with a School of Health and Human Sciences researcher will be improving resilience, reducing stigma and raising awareness of mental health for more than 8,000 participants as part of the 2021 Rugby League World Cup.

Dr Christian Swann was thrilled the ‘Ahead of the Game’ initiative, which he helped develop and lead, was announced as the official mental fitness program of the Rugby League World Cup to be held in the UK in October 2021. It will be delivered by Movember in partnership with Rugby League Cares and Rugby Football League.

“Throughout the Rugby League World Cup, and afterwards as a legacy project, elite athletes and select coaches will be trained to deliver ‘Ahead of the Game’ to 8,000 young athletes, 8000 parents and 360 coaches in community Rugby League clubs across the UK, with the aim of improving resilience in adolescent athletes, reducing stigma, and raising mental health literacy and awareness,” Dr Swann says.

Discover the Southern Cross University-partnered RLWC2021 mental health program

Contact the School of Health and Human Sciences

Dean and Head of School

T: +61 2 6620 3557

E: healthpa@scu.edu.au

Group Leads and Course Coordinators

Visit the Staff page

Director of Higher Degree Research

T: +61 2 6659 3688

E: john.hurley@scu.edu.au