The University of Melbourne team

Dr Anita D’Aprano, Paediatrician and Senior Research Fellow (Indigenous Child Health)

Dr Anita D’Aprano is a developmental paediatrician and Senior Research Fellow in Indigenous Child Health at the University of Melbourne.

She developed the ASQ-TRAK developmental screening tool – the first culturally appropriate tool for use with Australian Aboriginal children – following exploring developmental monitoring practices in Aboriginal populations.

Anita continues to lead ethical Indigenous child health research, principally in the development of culturally appropriate and validated measures. She has particular interest in and commitment to engaging Aboriginal communities to maximise the benefit of research so it makes a significant difference to the well-being of Aboriginal children and families.

Her current research program is focused on:

  • the national implementation of the ASQ-TRAK; and
  • developing a culturally appropriate early childhood outcome measure for Australian Aboriginal children – the ASQ-STEPS for Measuring Aboriginal Child Development.

Learn more at Anita's Find an Expert profile.

Ms Isabel Brookes, Research and Development Coordinator

Research and Development Coordinator

Isabel Brookes is the Research and Development Coordinator of the Unit. She has worked in both research and professional roles on Aboriginal research projects, most recently on the cultural adaptation of ASQ-3 items for the development of the ASQ-STEPS. Before joining the Unit, Isabel's work was centred on the implementation of evidence-based approaches in early learning settings; building the professional capacity of early childhood practitioners working with Aboriginal children; and engaging families in early learning and development.

Isabel believes that the effective integration of health and education in early childhood environments is essential to achieving learning and development equity between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal children; and that to achieve this authentic and respectful partnerships must be established and maintained with families, organisations and communities.

Ms Linda Browne, Training and Implementation Coordinator

Training and Implementation Coordinator

Linda Browne is the Training and Implementation Coordinator of the Unit.  As a Registered Teacher and Early Childhood Intervention practitioner, she has worked extensively as a teacher, professional learning leader and program manager across the health, education and community sectors, most recently in capacity building in the medical and Aboriginal  health workforce.

Passionate about high quality education and health outcomes for individuals, families and communities, Linda's work predominantly focuses on the development and delivery of ASQ-TRAK training for Practitioners and Facilitators.

Ms Leah Lindrea-Morrison, Aboriginal Research Assistant - ASQ-STEPS

Aboriginal Research Assistant - ASQ-STEPS Research Program

Leah Lindrea-Morrison is a Yorta Yorta woman and is the Aboriginal Research Assistant for the ASQ-STEPS research program. She has worked with the local Aboriginal community in local services – Education, Health, and Employment. Before joining the Unit, Leah was the Aboriginal, Partnerships and Community Engagement Officer at The University of Melbourne’s, Department of Rural Health. In this role Leah successfully engaged with both the community and service providers to organise Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Conferences. A key component of this work was focusing on Aboriginal perspectives and contributions to health, and showcasing community led solutions, underpinned by cultural theories to Aboriginal health and wellbeing.

As an Aboriginal woman, mother, aunty, sister, and grandmother, she understands and knows the importance of Early Childhood Development and education to give our next generation a more equitable life.  Leah is a member of the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Reference group for the Breast Cancer Network Australia and Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre.

Rachel MacEwan is a part-time Project Officer for the Unit providing essential administrative support across all  activities.