Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Postgraduate - Unit

This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2013 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

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6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

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FacultyFaculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences
Organisational UnitDepartment of Community Emergency Health and Paramedics
OfferedNot offered in 2013


This unit will locate the current status of the research literature in this domain. It will allow an in depth examination of the current disaster related research and evaluation models and compendia, identify the strengths and weaknesses of these models, clarify terminology issues, critically review the literature, consider conceptual frameworks and methodological issues in undertaking research and evaluations in the disaster preparedness and management setting and develop core competencies required to design, and conduct research and evaluations in this setting. The unit will establish a standardised approach to reporting disaster research and evaluations and the need to create compendia of such research evaluations towards building the science of disaster preparedness and management to provide a more sophisticated evidence-base for the discipline, and, to inform the research agenda for further research in this discipline.


By the completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Critically examine the international imperative for a structured approach to disaster research and evaluations;
  2. Explain the terminology and principles embedded in the conceptual, operational, and research frameworks for disaster research and evaluations;
  3. Locate and question databases of disaster research and evaluation reports;
  4. Locate and critically review published studies on disaster research and evaluations;
  5. Critique the current disaster research and evaluation models and conceptual frameworks, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of each model;
  6. Explain the core concepts required for a sustainable disaster research and evaluation model(s), including the principles of responsible conduct of research, using the Australian NH&MRC Guidelines as the framework;
  7. Apply these core concepts in the design, conduct and evaluation in a proposal for a disaster research or evaluation project;
  8. Identify publication sources and requirements to publish disaster research and evaluations, and,
  9. strategies to inform the research agenda for further research in this discipline.


Two minor assignments (1,000 words each)(30%)
Major assignment (4,000 words)(70%)

Chief examiner(s)

Contact hours

Off-campus students:
Students are required to spend, on average, 12 hours per week on this unit across the semester (156 hours in total) working through self-directed learning materials, participating in tutorials through MUSO and in preparation of unit assessment tasks.