Discipline of Paediatrics

About us

The Discipline of Paediatrics is largely based at Sydney Children’s Hospital, the second-largest paediatric hospital in New South Wales.  The Discipline of Paediatrics partners closely with Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network to provide teaching to UNSW Medicine undergraduate students and research support to clinical academics, hospital scientists, allied health, nursing, and higher degree candidates.

The vision and aspiration of the Discipline of Paediatrics is to provide excellence in education and research with the ultimate goal of improving child health outcomes.

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Research

The Discipline of Paediatrics has a dynamic research structure due in part to the broadness of the speciality.  Research within the Discipline is integrated into 6 research streams. These streams have been developed and continue to evolve based on the research strengths of the Discipline, UNSW Medicine, and Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network, as well as the interaction with national, State, and local health systems.

Research within the Discipline of Paediatrics is contributing both nationally and internationally to improving child health outcomes with evidenced-based novel and innovative interventions and therapies in cancer, clinical trials, health systems, non-communicable diseases, population health and rare diseases and genomics.

We currently have approximately 50 higher degree research students who are completing either their PhD, Masters of Medicine, or Masters of Science within the Discipline of Paediatrics. Of these, approximately 25 are based at Children’s Cancer Institute Australia, a major affiliated partner with the Discipline of Paediatrics.

The Discipline of Paediatrics is committed to greater linkage between healthcare providers and research organisations, working towards embedding translational research within healthcare delivery.  We aim to achieve this by echoing recommendations of the McKeon Review 2012, namely supporting priority-driven research, maintaining current research excellence, enhancing non-commercial and commercial pathways to impact, and attracting philanthropy and sustainable funding sources.

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Teaching

The Discipline of Paediatrics is involved with the teaching of undergraduate UNSW Medicine students including supervision of Honours and Independent Learning Projects.  The program is divided into three phases and students undertake paediatric teaching in each of the three. 

In Phase 1, students complete a shared clinical communications program with Obstetrics & Gynaecology, over a six-week period.  In Phase 2, students spend three weeks of a six-week teaching period in Paediatrics.  In Phase 3, students complete an 8-week teaching period in Paediatrics.  Phase 2 and 3 Students attend both Sydney Children’s Hospital and other UNSW teaching hospital sites across metropolitan Sydney and regional NSW hospitals. 

All UNSW Medicine students complete an Independent Learning Project (ILP) in phase 2 of their undergraduate study.  The ILP is a unique learning experience where students undertake a supervised research project of their choosing.  ILP’s intend to provide UNSW medical students with a period of in-depth study that engenders an approach to medicine that is constantly questioning and self-critical.  The ILP aims to promote lifelong learning patterns and skills which will enable them to approach future medical challenges in their careers with a rigor and depth not possible without a detailed knowledge of the formal processes of research, literature appraisal, data collection, analysis and presentation.

Annually, the Discipline of Paediatrics teaches 750 undergraduate students across all phases, and supervises approximately 45 Honours / Independent Learning Project students. 

We are committed to UNSW’s aspiration to continuously improve our position as a leading research-intensive university in the Asia-Pacific region, focusing on contemporary and social issues through defined strengths in professional, scientific and technological fields.  We seek to make a significant contribution to the development of knowledge, to learning and teaching, to our students, and to society on child health matters.

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