We are a group of researchers based in the Schools of Creative Industries and Psychology at UON with expertise in music; artmaking; art design; clinical and neuropsychology. We collaborate with researchers at UniMelb with expertise in music psychology and music therapy.
We research the effects of creative activities on well-being and brain health. Our main focus is on older adults (60+). Research already shows that sustained engagement in creative activities promotes well-being 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.
To provide background to our research we are carrying out a survey of older adults in order to find out what activities they have engaged with, and what they would like to engage with, with the aim of discovering the barriers and enablers to involvement. Our current plans comprise research into the benefits of song-writing and song production courses. Due to COVID19 we are transferring these to online delivery. We hope to commence these in 2020, using online measures and focus groups to collect data. Through the MAC outreach program, we also have the opportunity to research the benefits of art-making courses delivered online and face-to-face. This provides us with the opportunity to compare two different creative activities in art and music and fill a gap in current research.
Associate Professor Helen English is a music scholar, working in the field of music sociology. English is passionate about equity of access to music and committed to giving our older population access to quality creative arts experiences.
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Dr Kelly is a clinical psychologist specialising in dementia. She is passionate about improving the quality of life of people with a diagnosis of dementia and their carers
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Professor Frini Karayanidis is a leading authority in the field of Clinical NeuroPsychology. Her career has focused on understanding the functional and structural organisation of executive functions. .
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