Addressing dementia literacy needs in Tasmania

Evaluating dementia literacy in Tasmanian communities: codesigning strategies for improvement

Degree type


Closing date

18 July 2022



Citizenship requirement


About the research project

Health literacy is defined as the knowledge and skills needed to find and use information for health decision making. Poor health literacy contributes to poorer health outcomes, and, for Tasmania, this represents a significant challenge where health literacy levels are low.  Dementia is a major health challenge for Tasmania due to the aging population, prevalence of risk factors and poor access to many services. The majority of those living with dementia will continue to live within their communities, supported by family, friends and local services. Improved knowledge and awareness of dementia are fundamental to providing this support. The capacity to translate this knowledge about dementia into changed beliefs, attitudes, decision making and action about assessment, risk, diagnosis, access and use of health services for prevention, caregiving and support for people with dementia is critical. This can be described as dementia literacy.

The Wicking Centre has recently developed a new model of dementia literacy comprising knowledge, evaluation, engagement, readiness, social supports, specific dementia services, and practical needs. This project will examine dementia literacy in Tasmanian communities spanning geographical and socioeconomic divides. A proactive, integrated and co-design approach will be used to determine current dementia literacy levels, identify gaps, and distil new ways to improve dementia literacy through rural and remote community consultation.  Addressing dementia literacy needs in a form that is accessible, understandable, and actionable offers the best approach to equip Tasmanian communities to meet the challenge of dementia.

Primary Supervisor

Meet Dr Kathleen Doherty


Applicants will be considered for a Research Training Program (RTP) scholarship or Tasmania Graduate Research Scholarship (TGRS) which, if successful, provides:

  • a living allowance stipend of $28,854 per annum (2022 rate, indexed annually) for 3.5 years
  • a relocation allowance of up to $2,000
  • a tuition fees offset covering the cost of tuition fees for up to four years (domestic applicants only)

If successful, international applicants will receive a University of Tasmania Fees Offset for up to four years.

As part of the application process you may indicate if you do not wish to be considered for scholarship funding.


Applicants should review the Higher Degree by Research minimum entry requirements.

Selection Criteria

The project is competitively assessed and awarded.  Selection is based on academic merit and suitability to the project as determined by the College.

Application process

There is a three-step application process:

  1. Select your project, and check you meet the eligibility and selection criteria;
  2. Contact the Primary Supervisor, Dr Kathleen Doherty to discuss your suitability and the project's requirements; and
  3. Submit an application by the closing date listed above.
    • Copy and paste the title of the project from this advertisement into your application. If you don’t correctly do this your application may be rejected.
    • As part of your application, you will be required to submit a covering letter, a CV including 2 x referees and your project research proposal.

Following the application closing date applications will be assessed within the College. Applicants should expect to receive notification of the outcome by email by the advertised outcome date.

Apply now Explore other projects

Why the University of Tasmania?

Worldwide reputation for research excellence

Quality supervision and support

Tasmania offers a unique study lifestyle experience