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17 June 2016

HEARing CRC welcomes Dr Katherine Woodthorpe as its new Chair

Catherine WoodthorpeThe Board of the HEARing Cooperative Research Centre (HEARing CRC) is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Katherine Woodthorpe (pictured right) as its new Chair.

Dr Woodthorpe brings to the HEARing CRC a wealth of experience having served for almost 20 years as a chair or director on boards in government, listed entities and not-for-profits, including several Cooperative Research Centres.

HEARing CRC CEO Prof. Robert Cowan said the appointment was made following a comprehensive search by the Board of Directors.

“Katherine brings a wealth of governance, industry and commercial experience and acumen to the role of Chair, and we look forward to working with her over the coming years,” Prof. Cowan said.

Dr Woodthorpe is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Academy of Technology and Engineering. She holds a PhD in Chemistry (Manchester) and an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Technology Sydney.

She has a strong track record of achieving outcomes in a range of technology-oriented industries, including medical devices and health services, and also a deep knowledge of private equity and the financial sector.

“In 2013, Katherine was cited by the Australian Financial Review as one of the 100 Women of Influence for her active roles in innovation. I have no doubt that she will provide leadership and experience to the HEARing CRC Board and its Management as it focuses on translation and commercialization of research and educational outcomes,” Prof. Cowan said.

Dr Woodthorpe succeeds Dr Richard Searby AO QC as Chair.

“During his time as Chair, Richard made a wonderful and valuable contribution to the HEARing CRC, ensuring high standards of corporate governance, and most recently assisting us with gaining of our extension funding with the CRC Programme.”



8 June 2016

HEARing CRC researchers make an impact at two key hearing conferences

Joaquin ValderramaHEARing CRC researchers have been making waves with their research during May at local and international conferences alike.

In early May, a significant delegation of HEARing CRC researchers presented at the 2016 American Cochlear Implant CI2016 International Conference (CI2016 International) in Toronto, Canada.  At this important hearing-technology conference, podium presentations were delivered by two of our senior staff. A/Prof. Robert Briggs (The University of Melbourne) talked on the results of a first-time study on the use of cortical steroids as a targeted drug therapy for cochlear implantees to reduce the tissue trauma associated with electrode insertion, and our CEO, Prof. Robert Cowan, presented data on automatic hearing threshold estimations using Cortical Auditory Evoked Potentials.

Dr Shani Dettman (The University of Melbourne) also presented her research on speech perception outcomes for children who received cochlear implants at 12 months or younger, while HEARing CRC PhD candidate Colleen Psarros (RIDBC) provided her clinical insights into cochlear implant activations.

At this conference, the activities of the HEARing CRC were widely promoted with many of our researchers presenting at plenary sessions – including some of our newer PhD students and postdocs. Again leading researchers, such as Prof. Louse Hickson (The University of Queensland), Prof. Robert Cowan and Adjunct Prof. Harvey Dillon (National Acoustic Laboratories) Prof. Richard Dowell (The University of Melbourne) and Associate Prof. Cath McMahon (Macquarie University) were presenting at or chairing sessions, or were involved with the conference’s roundtable sessions.

Adding to this presence a significant number of posters were on display profiling HEARing CRC research in the foyer adjacent to the Conference’s main exhibition area. These posters covered a variety of topics from patient-centred hearing healthcare, to optimal clinical support for patients with self-fitting hearing aids to the preliminary results of a HEARsmart initiative to reduce the risks of hearing damage at live music venues.

At the annual 2016 Audiology Australia Gala Dinner, new arrival to the HEARing CRC, Dr Joaquin Valderrama (National Acoustic Laboratories & Macquarie University) won the Laurie Upfold Young Presenter Award in Recognition of Services to the Profession of Audiology (pictured above) for his paper on Neural Correlations of Auditory Brainstem Responses with Speech Perception in Noise.  Joaquin’s research forms part of the HEARing CRC’s Early Indicators of Noise Injury Project.

In the exhibition area, the HEARing CRC Booth proved popular and provided us with a great opportunity to chat to delegates and talk about our newer HEARnet Online and HEARsmart websites while getting some valuable feedback about our online training site, HEARnet Learning. Thanks to those who came by – it was great to see you all.

Overall, both these conferences have provided heartening insights into how highly regarded and well recognised the HEARing CRC is both throughout Australia and internationally. You can see some of the HEARing CRC highlights at the 2016 Audiology Australia Conference by watching the short You Tube video below.


16 May 2016

Help wanted to better understand how eHealth can be used to address the communication needs of adults with hearing loss

hearing loss and communicationHow can information and communication technologies meet the hearing and communication needs of adults with hearing loss and their families and friends?

The University of Queensland, in collaboration with the HEARing Cooperative Research Centre, is conducting a research project to explore how hearing services could be improved through the adoption of eHealth.

If you would like to participate, you will be asked to:

  1. complete a short survey about your experiences with using information and communication technologies to support your services with adult clients with hearing loss; and
  2. brainstorm ways in which these technologies could be used to better meet the hearing and communication needs of adults with hearing loss and their families and friends.

Both activities can be done online at a time and place that suits you! People who complete the study will be entered into a draw to win a $100 Coles Myer gift voucher.

For more information on how you can be involved, please email  Carly Meyer  or phone: (07) 3365 8547.

To register your interest and to complete the short survey follow the links below based on how you are affected by hearing loss:

3 May 2016

New research suggests self-fitting hearing aids have a positive role to play in developing countries

A new range of self-fitting hearing aids has the potential to meet the growing need for hearing technologies in developing countries and remote locations in the developed world.

The Hearing Cooperative Research Centre (HEARing CRC) and its Member, the National Acoustic Laboratories (NAL), have recently studied the developments of this new technology to provide new insights that will help clinicians make better decisions about the best ways to use them.

The results of this research were summarised in a research paper published last week by Dr Gitte Keidser and Elizabeth Convery called Self-Fitting Hearing Aids – Status Quo and Future Predictions.

Self-fitting hearing aids have recently become available through unregulated, direct-to-consumer market in developed countries and the focus of HEARing CRC and NAL research aimed at understanding their manageability by clinicians and comparing their performance to professionally fitted hearing aids.

Predominantly positive findings highlighted in the paper suggest that self-fitting hearing aids when paired with teleaudiology (the provision of hearing services over the internet) could deliver these services to people who can’t access or afford the traditional methods.

“Self-fitting devices are now accessible in the marketplace and the product range is set to grow. Our research has identified the expectations of these devices to ensure good hearing outcomes are delivered to patients, and is currently investigating who can manage them without, or with limited, support,” Dr Keidser explained.

“There are challenges ahead and we believe there will be a significant and potentially rapid growth in self-fitting health related products following on from wearable technologies (such as fitbits).”

In the future, low-cost hearing aids are likely to consist of earpieces that connect wirelessly with smartphones, with health providers offering assistance through traditional face-to-face appointments with audiologists or through a tele-health infrastructure.

“If self-fitting hearing aids can be produced and distributed in such a way they are both affordable and the approach is sustainable, this type of device could offer the potential to meet the growing demand for hearing technologies in developing countries, as well as the more remote locations in the developed world,” Dr Keidser said.

The World Health Organisation estimates that 60 million people worldwide have disabling hearing loss, with the majority located in low- and middle-income countries. Hearing loss is more common as people age and figures show that one-third of people over 65 years old are affected by hearing loss, with prevalence greatest in South Asia, Asia-Pacific and sub-Saharan Africa.


26 April 2016

Job Position: Postdoctoral Fellow Hearing and Cognitive Aging


The Multisensory Communication Program in the MARCS Institute for Brain, Behaviour and Development in association with the HEARing CRC is seeking a postdoctoral researcher with high level skills and expertise in the broad area of speech perception in elderly people (with/without hearing-impairment).

This post-doctoral project covers three HEARing CRC research areas: Measurement of Real-Life Impact of Hearing Disorders; Tools for Identifying the Role of Attention in Difficult Listening Situations and Therapies to Improve Speech Perception in Elderly Adults with Auditory Processing Disorders. The successful applicant is expected to be developing a strong international standing and research reputation, based on an excellent research background in psychology, linguistics, psycholinguistics, or cognitive sciences.

The position is full-time for a period of 3 years and will be based on the Bankstown campus. Remuneration Package: Academic Level A (Step 3-4) $93,659 to $99,365 p.a. (comprising Salary $84,498 to $89,646 p.a., plus 9.5% Superannuation, plus Leave Loading). After 12 months continuous service the appointee may be eligible for 17% employer superannuation contribution.

Position Enquiries: Professor Chris Davis, email chris.davis@westernsydney.edu.au

Closing Date:22 May 2016
Follow these links to view Position Description or further information regarding this position.



6 April 2016

2101WCARegistrations Now Open For The 2016 World Congress of Audiology

Early bird registrations are now open for the 33rd World Congress of Audiology (WCA) .

Delegates can register online here.

International Society of Audiology, Canadian Academy of Audiology or Speech-Language and Audiology Canada members are entitled to preferential rates. Due to Canada’s current low foreign exchange rate, congress fees are economical for international delegates.

The WCA2016 will feature speakers from around the world, covering the latest topics in audiology research and practice.

Early bird registration deadline closes on May 31, 2016.



30 March 2016

Job Position: Research Assistant (eHealth)

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The HEARing CRC and The University of Queensland’s School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences are seeking a highly motivated Research Assistant to be part of an exciting team committed to improving outcomes for people with hearing loss.

The role will involve assisting investigators in research projects related to the development, implementation and evaluation of a family-centred approach to delivering hearing healthcare to people with hearing loss and their family via eHealth.

The applicant will be involved in a range of tasks associated with the studies including participant recruitment, research protocol design and implementation, data collection (qualitative and quantitative) and data analysis.

You can find out more about this role here, including a downloadable position description.

Please note, applications for this position closes on 13 April 2016 (11:55pm Eastern Australia Standard Time).


3 March 2016

Australian study leads the way in improving outcomes of infants with hearing loss

Now into its 11th year, the Longitudinal Outcomes of Children with Hearing Impairment (LOCHI) study has revealed that infants detected with hearing loss and fitted with hearing aids soon after birth develop better spoken language abilities at 5 years of age than those whose hearing loss was discovered later. Infants who receive cochlear implants before 12 months of age develop better language than those who receive a cochlear implant at a later age.

More info…



14 December 2015


Postdoctoral Researcher opportunity in Magnetoencephalography – apply now!

An exciting opportunity exists at Macquarie University for a postdoctoral researcher to develop and use the magnetoencephalographic (MEG) system to investigate brain responses in adults and children with a unilateral cochlear implant (MEG III). The successful candidate will participate in research projects developing and assessing new noise reduction techniques for MEG III measurements; and planning and implementing research studies investigating the nature and trajectory of brain changes following cochlear implantation.

More info…


8 September 2015


2 PhD Scholarships at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science – apply now!

The HEARing Cooperative Research Centre is offering two PhD scholarships  in association with the ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science at the University of Wollongong, to undertake research focused on:
1) Using EQCM to understand electrode-protein-cellular interactions
2) Using BioAFM to understand electrode-protein-cellular interactions

More info…


8 September 2015

2 PhD scholarships at Macquarie University – apply now!hearnetCRC

The HEARing Cooperative Research Centre is offering two PhD scholarships to undertake research focused on:

More info…


16 July 2015

Research Project Coordinator Position Available (Maternity Leave)

hearnetCRCThe HEARing Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) is currently seeking a Research Project Coordinator to fill a position that has become available.

More info…


7 July 2015

Do you want to be part of shaping the future of audiology in Australia?

We are seeking highly motivated PhD Scholars to be part of an exciting team committed to improving outcomes for people with hearing loss. The program of research will focus on the development, implementation, and evaluation of a patient/family-centred hearing rehabilitation intervention.

More info…

29 June 2015

2015 IRC Research Grants closing soon

The Hearing Induirclogo4stry Research Consortium (IRC) is currently seeking innovative research proposals that can improve service quality and client management for hearing-impaired people.

For the 2015 grant round, the IRC wishes to hear from researchers who are collecting and analysing large-scale datasets that are likely to provide new insights into the relationships between clinical practice, patients and patient populations.

More info…


4 June 2015

‘Self-fitting’ hearing aids holds promise for millions

Health services in the developing world could benefit from a prototype hearing aid that assesses a person’s hearing thresholds and automatically adjusts its outputs accordingly.

“The lack of audiologists to assess hearing, fit devices and provide rehabilitation is a major problem in developing countries,” said Professor Bob Cowan, CEO of the HEARing CRC.

More info…

26 May 2015

Excellence in Innovation Award recognises websites’ positive impact on hearing loss awareness

This week, the HEARing Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) was one of only two recipients of an Excellence in Innovation Award, presented by the Minister for Industry and Science the Hon Ian Macfarlane at the 2015 Cooperative Research Centres Association Conference Dinner at Parliament House, Canberra.


1 March 2015

Research funding boost sets the stage for live music venues to become hearing friendly

In support of the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) ‘Make Listening Safe’ Campaign, aimed at drawing attention to the growing risk of hearing loss posed by unsafe listening practices, the HEARing Cooperative Research Centre (HEARing CRC) today announced a pilot study that will help determine how live music venues in Australia can be more “hearing friendly.”

More Info…


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