Companion Bot, a combined Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) approach to loneliness for community dwelling rural older adults

Closing Date

14th May 2021

Applicants should contact the primary supervisor, and submit their Expression of Interest (EOI) and Application as soon as possible.

Colleges Involved
  • College of Science and Engineering
  • College of Health and Medicine
The Research Project

Ageing is associated with increased feelings and experiences of loneliness and social isolation. Research shows that loneliness can be a particular issue for older Australians who live in rural and remote areas such as Tasmania. Health promotion interventions aimed at reducing social isolation in the elderly suggest that interventions where individuals are required to actively participate are more effective than passive interventions.

This innovative project seeks to assess the extent to which a novel technological intervention “CompanionBot” can help reduce the prevalence of social isolation and loneliness for elders. The project seeks to use a novel combination of Artificial Intelligence and Internet of Things to track an older person’s movement and patterns of daily activities in their home to provide early detection of social isolation and reduce loneliness through conversational engagement with an AI-powered conversational bot. This study will offer an opportunity to evaluate the effectiveness of technological interventions with older groups in rural areas to address social isolation and loneliness using both an empirical and qualitative framework.

This project will be based at the Newnham Campus, Launceston, TAS.

  • The project is open to domestic (Australian and New Zealand) and international applicants. Preference will be given to applicants who can commence in 2019
  • The PhD study must be undertaken on a full-time basis.
  • Applicants must hold a degree from a Recognised Tertiary Institution as being in the appropriate discipline and equivalent to: - A Bachelor Honours degree of at least second class upper standard with a Minimum Research Component - A Masters of Research Degree with a Minimum Research Component - A Masters Degree (Coursework) or Graduate Diploma with a Minimum Research Component.
  • Applicants for whom English is not their first language will be required to provide: IELTS with Minimum Overall Score of 6.5, while achieved 6.5 for writing and speaking and no other band less than 6.0 (academic module), or TOEFL with Minimum Overall Score of 92, while achieved 26 for writing and speaking, and 20 for reading and listening, or PTE Academic with Minimum Overall Score of 58, while achieved 58 for writing and speaking with no other score lower than 50
  • Candidates must have knowledges in the following fields: artificial intelligence, machine learning and internet of things

See the following web page for entry requirements:

Application Process

Applicants who require more information or are interested in this specific project should first contact the listed Supervisor. Information and guidance on the application process can be found on the Apply Now website.

Information about scholarships is available on the Scholarships webpage.

More Information

Please contact, Winyu Chinthammit for further information.