University of the Third Age Brisbane

Connecting Seniors to Lifelong Learning

University of the Third Age Brisbane

Connecting Seniors to Lifelong Learning

Winter School Week

U3A Brisbane Winter School is a week-long activity of specialised talks and presentations by various experts in their field. It covers topics including science, technology, literature, history and medicine. It is conducted during the second week of the mid-year break.

Winter School 2018 is currently being planned and will be held from 9-14 July 2018.

The Winter School is planned by a Committee chaired by Marilyn Wagland. Contact email:
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Winter School 2018

Keynote Speakers

Dr Daniel Blackmore

Research Fellow, Queensland Brain Institute

Dr Daniel Blackmore We are delighted to announce that Dr Daniel Blackmore from the Queensland Brain Institute (QBI) has agreed to be our Keynote Speaker for this year. There is some ground-breaking research into Alzheimer’s happening at QBI and Dr Blackmore is in the thick of it. Some of the results are surprising and Dr Blackmore will take us through some of them and also expand on his own research in the lab and on the extensive trials being conducted into the benefits of exercising for patients with Alzheimer's and Dementia. Traditionally, the brain was thought to be a static organ incapable of regeneration but there has been a radical shift away from this belief. It is now believed that the adult brain is a very "plastic" organ, capable of forming new nerve connections (neuroplasticity) and it even maintains the ability to continually produce new nerve cells (neurogenesis) throughout life.

His current research is directed towards how neural stem cells are regulated to harness their regenerative capacity and ultimately prevent or restore cognitive function lost due to ageing or disease. In addition to this he is heavily involved in extensive human trials using exercise therapy and ultrasound treatment.

John QuinnJohn Quinn - This is such an important topic we thought it would be a good idea to give you a more rounded view of this disease which includes some good news. John has been working with Dr Blackmore and has taken part in a number of the trials at QBI. He has been living successfully with Early Onset Dementia since 2010. As a speaker he is much in demand at major international and national conferences and his story is an inspirational one. Although it took him a few years to come to terms with it he discovered there is life after a diagnosis of Dementia. There may be no cure as yet but we are getting closer and there are things that can be done to slow it down. He has accomplished much in the last seven or eight years. He has travelled extensively and is still attending Spanish classes and is a great ambassador for exercise of both body and brain and how much it can help. In a former life he was a school headmaster so I guess you just can’t keep a good teacher down.

Glenys Petrie - John and Glenys are a team and Glenys will give you an insight into this terrible disease from a carer’s point of view. Often carers are forgotten in this equation and she also has a story to tell. She has learned some interesting strategies as she accompanied John on his journey and also learned a number of 'dos' and 'don'ts' along the way. They are important ones and she will expand on these during her talk.

Winter School 2017

The 2017 program:
Detailed Program 2017 (18 pages)
Summary Program 2017 (3 pages)

Presentation Notes
The following presentations have been made available by presenters in PDF format. 

Busting some Water Myths Assoc. Prof. Frederic Leucsh

Exercise, Ageing and your Health Prof Rob Robergs

MOOCs and Wikis Deslyn Taylor

Positive Ageing through Music Participation Teresa Kunaeva

Staying Safe on the Internet Greg Taylor

History of the Northern Territory Greg Cope

Cracking the Mysteries of our Universe Dr Janie Hoormann

A History of Aboriginal Servicemen Greg Cope

The Justice Myth Greg Cudmore

Palaeontologist and Senior Lecturer, School of Biological Sciences, University Of Qld.

Dr Steven Salisbury Dr Steve Salisbury and his team have discovered Australia’s Jurassic Park. Along a 25 kilometre stretch of the Dampier Peninsula, in the remote but beautiful Kimberleys, they braved sharks, crocodiles, massive tides and major development to uncover thousands of dinosaur tracks belonging to 21 different types of dinosaurs. This is the most diverse in the world. Steve describes it as the "Cretaceous equivalent of the Serengeti." The tracks are in rocks that are 130 -140 million years old – much older than those found in outback Queensland. Among them is the only confirmed evidence for stegosaurs in Australia. Some of these footprints are 1.7 metres long. What makes Steve’s work even more interesting is the political battle he had to wage because the WA government had selected the site for a $40 billion liquid natural gas project. With the traditional custodians of the land assisting him, the area was declared a National Heritage Site in 2011. Come along to hear Steve, a brilliant speaker, detail his adventures in this remarkable part of the world in his Keynote address for this year’s Winter School. Dinosaurs, Dreamtime and Drones is a fascinating look at the ancient and modern combining to give us answers in the 21st century to a very old question.

More Information about Australia's Jurassic Park

(Image courtesy University of Qld)

Winter School 2016

Another successful Winter School is now over. We thank the many speakers, volunteers and over 1800 attendees who made the week a success.

Winter School 2016

Winter School 2016

2016 Presentations
The following presentations have been made available by presenters in PDF format. Others may be made available in due course.

Digital Reading Presentation (E-Books etc.) Angela Butler

The 2016 program:
Summary Program 2016 (2 pages)

Winter School 2015

2015 Presentations
The following presentations have been made available by presenters in PDF format:

Anzac Nurses - Philip Castle     Text

The Rise of China: Whither the West? - Martin Stuart-Fox     Text

Numbers, Minders and Keepers - Peter Galbraith

Online Learning, MOOCs and Wikis - Deslyn Taylor

Exercise: Everything you want to know - Dr Tim Henwood

The Art of Ageing - Georgia Cummings

Renewable Energy: How to get to 100% - Dylan Tusler

The 2015 program:
Detailed Program 2015 (16 pages)
Summary Program 2015 (4 pages)

Winter School 2014

The 2014 Keynote Address at the State Library Auditorium was presented to 240 attendees by Emeritus Professor Roly Sussex. This was the full program:
Detailed Program 2014

The following notes were provided by speakers at the 2014 Winter School. We are grateful to the presenters for making these notes available. These notes are in PDF format. You will need Adobe Reader or an alternative PDF reader to open them.
Keynote Address - Roly Sussex
iPads and Tablets for Seniors - Deslyn Taylor
The Climate Problem - John Price



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