La Trobe University

La Trobe University was established in 1964. It takes a brave, bold approach to higher education and delivers socially responsible, inclusive, relevant and radical teaching, learning and research. La Trobe University is also a leading provider of regional higher education in Australia.

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The TGA is still slow to act on products making dubious weight-loss claims. puuikibeach

New weight-loss claims show TGA reforms aren’t working

Little seems to have changed inside the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA). And that’s despite two years of reviews into the shortcomings of its regulatory processes and the release, late last year…
Love and neurochemistry go hand in hand. brianwiese

I love you (and that’s not the dopamine talking)

You know the feeling: your heart’s beating faster, your pupils dilate, your palms are sweaty, and you’ve got a belly-full of butterflies. You’re in love and, yes, you’re “all shook up”. The euphoria of…
A toilet wall has more than meets the eye. Flickr/ukslim

Women’s toilets in Australia: the writing is on the wall

La Trobe University’s Dr Jan Schapper recently completed a study into signage and writing on women’s toilets in Australia. The research, just published in the international journal, “Gender, Place and…
Despite placebos’ reputation as worthless therapy, many medical practitioners still use them. FML/Wikimedia Commons

Not just smoke and mirrors: placebo’s place in modern medicine

Belief is a powerful medicine but the term “placebo” has negative connotations. In modern evidence-based medicine, treatments considered worthless are described as no better than placebos. But this description…
Interns should be more than just coffe-gophers … shouldn’t they? flickr/happydog

For love not money: interns and the modern workplace

Last week Reuters reported a former intern at Harper’s Bazaar is suing the magazine’s publisher, Hearst Corporation, saying her internship violated US labour laws because it was unpaid. The intern, who…
Differences in the brains of autistic infants emerge well before behavioural signs. Awen Photography

Looking for early signs of autism in the infant brain

For parents of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD), the diagnostic process can be a long and stressful journey. Behavioural signs of ASD can appear around the child’s first birthday when he fails…
There’s not much money in newspapers, but plenty of chances to promote your views. AAP

Rinehart’s media ambitions: bad news for coverage of climate change

News that Gina Rinehart has reportedly attained a 12.8% stake in Fairfax Media (and is seeking just under 15%) is bad for the Australian media environment: it potentially puts yet another billionaire in…
Get your feet wet this summer holidays. Joanne Snaps

Off the couch and out the door: getting your kids into nature

Here’s a scene that might be familiar: it’s an invitingly sunny day yet, infuriatingly, the kids remain sprawled, skinny and listless, on the couch. They’re peering into tiny Nintendo machines and every…
How can we stop people putting themselves in peril? AAP/Josh Jerga

Five ways to prevent more asylum seeker tragedies

Last weekend, an overcrowded fishing boat sank off the coast of Indonesia with more than 200 asylum seekers on board. In Australia, the political blame game started soon after with both sides trying to…
It’s all love and cuddles until the seven-year itch. purplemattfish

Why do women have less body hair than men?

The question of why human beings have virtually no body hair – as discussed yesterday on The Conversation – has puzzled evolutionary theorists since Darwin’s Descent of Man (1871). It’s puzzling because…
Cutting down on processed food means less rubbish in the bin. poopee shmoopee/Flickr

NHMRC’s healthy diet is also good for the environment

The NHMRC’s new Australian dietary guidelines recommend eating more fruits, vegetables, legumes, beans and wholegrains and eating fewer starchy vegetables, refined cereals, red meat (unless you are a young…
MP Catherine King, who announced TGA reforms on Thursday afternoon, speaks to reporters on Aug. 11, 2011. AAP/Melissa Lahoud

TGA all bark no bite as Labor botches response to a series of reviews

The government has just announced its response to a series of reviews of the Therapeutic Goods Administration over the past 18 months. The announcement was brought forward after a summary of the reforms…
Environmental health practitioners can tighten up waste management, but they cannot predict how each individual attendee will treat the grounds. Christian Haugen

Take the festy out of music festivals this summer

Summer is the season for all kinds of lovely outdoor activities, not the least of which is a spate of music festivals, which kicks off tomorrow with Victoria’s Meredith Music Festival. But there’s a dark…
Quality relationships and time spent together is what’s important when it comes to children’s wellbeing. Flickr/disgustipado

Shared parenting: what’s really important when dads move out

The media often blame a lot of society’s problems on the break down of traditional family structures and the increase in single parent homes. When fathers no longer live at home, policy makers focus on…
Foreign Minister Stephen Smith congratulates Julia Gillard after the vote changing ALP policy on the export of uranium to China was won. AAP/Dean Lewins

ALP National Conference: Where was the arms control debate over uranium exports to India?

On Sunday, the Australian Labor Party voted 206 to 185 in favour of changing one part of the party’s longstanding and non-negotiable platform on uranium exports: that recipient states must be members of…
Protests during the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS in 2001. The public image of the disease has evolved over the last 30 years, aitlyn tikkun

Lessons from the history of HIV/AIDS in Australia – how activism changed the image of an illness

The theme for World AIDS Day this year is “HIV is still here”. It was chosen because we don’t hear quite so much these days as we once did about HIV or AIDS. In 2012, it will be 30 years since the first…

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