Evaluation of Healthy Active Learning initiative

   School of Sport, Exercise and Nutrition

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  Dr Ajmol Ali  No more applications being accepted  Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

About the Project

Multi-disciplinary evaluation of the Healthy Active Learning initiative – a 5-year nationwide project aiming to improve health and wellbeing of schoolchildren through healthy eating and drinking and quality physical activity.

Healthy Active Learning is a joint government initiative between Sport New Zealand and the Ministries of Health and Education to improve the wellbeing of tamariki (children) and rangatahi (youth) through healthy eating and drinking and quality physical activity. It is driven by a $47m Government commitment to the Child and Youth Wellbeing Strategy.

The baseline assessment has been completed (2020-2021) and the Phase 1 post-intervention data will be collected in 2022-2023; the Phase 2 post-intervention data will be collected in 2024-2025. As part of the evaluation we will investigate physical activity of students (within school and outside of school) using a variety of research tools including accelerometers, questionnaires, focus groups (students) and also gain information from teacher and parents surveys, as well as teacher and parent focus groups. We also have several sources of data from Ministry of Education, Ministry of Health and Sport NZ. Currently, there are two PhD and five Masters students working on various aspects of the project. The potential PhD student(s) will work with Prof Ajmol Ali and other academics (as appropriate, depending on topic area/discipline) to set the criteria for assessment, undertake a detailed literature review, identify specific aims and objectives, examine and analyse relevant data, and write up thesis.

This is your chance to work on a nationwide project, involving three different government agencies, and undertaking impactful work that will affect the children of New Zealand.

A short presentation explaining the evaluation can be found here: https://webcast.massey.ac.nz/Mediasite/Play/aeb2ecf3303743ccbce280575f4d68391d

And, the website with the relevant information about the intervention itself: https://sportnz.org.nz/focus-areas/healthy-active-learning/

Preferred candidate

PhD candidates with a background in physical activity, nutrition, psychology, education, economics and/or statistics who want to undertake research in different aspects of public health.


You must:

* have Masters degree in relevant field (e.g. sport and exercise, nutrition, public health, biostatistics, economics, sleep science, education, psychology)

* have an interest in working with children

* be flexible, able to work in a multidisciplinary team, and be passionate about public health research

* appropriate English language abilities

To be eligible for a scholarship, a minimum New Zealand GPA of 7.5 is required (approximately A- average; or >3.33 on USA GPA scale).

Please send the following documents with your enquiry email:

* cover letter

* CV with referees

* academic record

* English language certification

Sport & Exercise Science (33)

Funding Notes

Scholarships may be available (competitive funding). To be eligible for a scholarship, a minimum New Zealand GPA of 7.5 is required (approximately A- average; or >3.33 on USA GPA scale).
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