NATS 7051 Applied research with marginalised populations and sensitive health topics

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 800215

Coordinator Elizabeth Conroy Opens in new window

Description This subject will teach students practical knowledge and skills for conducting research with marginalised populations and on sensitive health topics. Students will learn ethical, methodological, and practical considerations in applied qualitative and mixed method research. Upon completion of the subject students will be able to develop a theoretically coherent qualitative or mixed method research protocol and justify their decision making at every stage of the research process. The skills developed in this subject will enable students to adapt research methods to ensure the integrity of the research process with marginalised populations and sensitive health topics.

School Graduate Research School

Discipline Medical Science

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 2 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Postgraduate Coursework Level 7 subject


Students must be enrolled in a postgraduate program.

Assumed Knowledge

Students will need basic knowledge of research design/approaches e.g. 800166 ‘Research Design 1: Theories of Enquiry’ or 401076 ‘Introduction to Epidemiology’ or 401080 ‘Research Protocol Design and Practice’ or similar.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of ethical considerations in working with marginalised populations and sensitive health topics
  2. Demonstrate knowledge of mixed method or qualitative research design
  3. Critically appraise the development of study materials
  4. Critically appraise recruitment procedures and protocols
  5. Demonstrate ways to involve the community throughout the research process
  6. Demonstrate engagement in reflexivity throughout all stages of the research protocol

Subject Content

The subject is presented via series of in-person workshops supplemented by online content. The following topics will be covered:

  • Introduction to translational research including stakeholder engagement and the knowledge-to-action cycle
  • The research approach including key concepts, empathy as it applies to the research process, researcher positionality and reflexivity, trauma informed research and researcher self-care
  • Ethical research practice with marginalised populations and sensitive topics including the ethics committee and governance requirements, continuous consent process, and ethical decision making
  • Introduction to co-design practices
  • Theoretical and conceptual frameworks that address social determinants and power imbalances.
  • Recruitment strategies for hard-to-reach populations
  • Approaches to data collection (Part 2) - narrative and arts-based qualitative methods
  • Approaches to data analysis


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Portfolio 2,000 words 30 Y Individual
Portfolio 2,000 words 30 Y Individual
Presentation 20 minutes 40 Y Individual

Teaching Periods

Autumn (2024)



Subject Contact Elizabeth Conroy Opens in new window

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