Ear Science’s global outlook

The Clinical Research team has a visiting Doctoral student in the team for nine months; meet Hatice Akçakaya.

Hatice is from the Ankara University Institute of Educational Sciences in Turkey, and has joined Dr Dona Jayakody’s team. In her time at Ear Science, Hatice will be completing a systematic review, looking at the cognitive functions of prelingually hearing-impaired adults.

“The evidence suggests that when someone develops a hearing loss in mid/later life if left untreated, this can be a risk factor for dementia,” explains Dr Jayakody. “But what we don’t know, is if someone is born with a hearing impairment, what are their risks of developing dementia? That’s what Hatice will be looking at.”

Initially, Hatice took an interest in Dr Jayakody’s research and reached out online via ResearchGate. Hatice was successful in obtaining a scholarship from the Turkish Government to complete a research placement overseas, to learn how research is conducted outside of Turkey. By completing this placement, she will bring new ideas and learnings to the research environment in Turkey.

“She will be working closely with myself and Dr Blake Lawrence while she is here,” said Dr Jayakody. “In addition, she will spend time in the clinic with Jack Goodman Simpson, learning how to do the cognitive testing we’re doing and observing adult appointments. She’ll also spend some time in our paediatric clinic, observing our paediatric audiology assessments, to get a full understanding of what we do here at Ear Science.”

Hatice is enjoying her time in WA so far: “I love walking around Perth’s parks, lakes and of course Freo!”

“Outside of work, I love dancing, cooking and chatting with my friends and spending time with my family. I also enjoy learning about new things, reading especially psychological books and watching movies.”

Welcome, Hatice!