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Research can be undertaken at the diploma, master's, or PhD level. For more information regarding research within Occupational and Aviation Medicine please contact – Course Director, Research.

Current student research

  • Fatigue and non-technical skills performance in critical care aeromedical transfer clinicians – PhD
  • Enhancement of Non-Technical Skills of Health Professionals and Teams in the Acute Obstetric Aeromedical Transport – PhD
  • Trends and relationships between pilot aging and simulator performance in commercial pilots – MHealSc (Aviation Medicine)
  • An examination of paramedic use of point of care ultrasound in the pre-hospital setting – MHealSc (Aeromedical Retrieval and Transport)

Recent student research (Thesis)

  • Cardiovascular risk assessment in airline pilots – PhD (Aviation Medicine)
  • Participation in a blood and body fluid exposure programme in a multinational healthcare facility in an emerging country – PhD (Occupational Medicine)
  • Relationship of individual pilot factors to simulated flight performance – Master's Thesis (AvMed)
  • Is the use of non-invasive haemoglobin measurements accurate and reliable during the transfer of sick and injured patients utilising air ambulance aircraft? – Master's Thesis (AeroRT)

Recent student research (AVME 780 and summer studentships)

  • Effects of reducing exposure to whole-body vibration on low back and neck pain in locomotive engineers
  • Key competencies in air ambulance assistance medicine
  • Factors influencing retention in the paramedic workforce
  • Drug and alcohol use in farm workers
  • Body Mass Index in young airline pilots: Does BMI change during training and does it correlate with sickness absence once qualified?
  • Does the use of a specific clinical pathway expedite Emergency Department (ED) processing times for S-T Elevation Myocardial Infarction (STEMI) patients?
  • Can student paramedics successfully assess a potential spinal injury patient using a spinal immobilization algorithm and subsequently correctly immobilize this patient if required?
  • Aeromedical transfer of patients with ST segment Elevation Myocardial Infarction for Primary Percutaneous Coronary Intervention: in a rural New Zealand setting
  • Does crew qualification improve patient outcome following out-of-hospital cardiac arrest in New Zealand?
  • Inter-hospital aeromedical transports within New Zealand: Investigating the incidence of physiological adverse events
  • Treatment of paediatric patients in the community by extended care paramedics
  • Anaesthetics oxygen mixtures during cardiac procedures


What is involved in doing a research based master's degree in Aviation Medicine?

The MHealSc endorsed in Aviation Medicine must include four core Aviation Medicine papers (AVME711 – 714), an approved research methods paper such as AVME 785, and research to the total value of 240 points. The research phase can take the form of a thesis (equivalent to 120 points and expected to take two years part-time); or it can be of shorter duration in the form of a research project plus some extra papers. Those who plan to progress on to a PhD in the future are advised to undertake the thesis-based research Masters option. For more information on undertaking a research based Masters degree contact

What other research based degrees does OAM offer?

We are always happy to hear from students interested in completing a PhD with the OAMU. We also offer a Research Master's endorsed in Aeromedical Retrieval and Transport, or Occupational Medicine. There is a Thesis version (which leads to the PhD) or a Research Project version. More about the different research masters' options.

What facilities are available?

Supervision of research is largely carried out at a distance. Students are expected to work independently with regular contact with their research supervisors. Research can be undertaken at a facility of your choosing. There is no aerospace medicine laboratory at the University of Otago, Wellington.

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