Self-management and Health Promotion in early-stage dementia with E-learning for carers (SHAPE)

Receiving a diagnosis of dementia can lead to an overwhelming mix of emotions. It is very important that individuals and families have access to support and advice at this time, to help people regain control, plan for the future and carry on living a life that is meaningful to them.

The ‘SHAPE’ research study is a multi-site trial, working in collaboration with Norway and the UK. This study aims to test a new online training and support group for people in the early stages of dementia and e-leaning programme for care partners.

What does the study involve?

Participants of this study will be randomised into 1 of 2 groups:

Intervention group: People with dementia will be invited to a training and support group, comprising of 10 weekly online sessions, each lasting up to 2 hours. Participants will be supported to develop skills in areas including decision-making, symptom management, healthy habits adapting and coping. Care partners will receive an e-learning program following similar themes with some additional support.

Control group: Participants will not receive the group training from our team but will have access to the online training after the study is complete.

What are the benefits of this study?

We hope the online group sessions will help to put people with dementia at the centre of their care, improve wellbeing, maintain independence and encourage families to discuss and plan for the future together. In the long-term, we hope this research will help inform the type and standard of care which individuals and families receive following a diagnosis of dementia.

Interested in volunteering?

This study may be suited to you if:

  • You have a formal diagnosis of dementia
  • You are 65 and older
  • You are comfortable communicating, reading and writing in English
  • You have vision and hearing which allow you to engage comfortably in a group setting
  • You have a care partner (family member or friend) who is willing to dedicate a small amount of time to the study

What would happen if you take part in the study?

The study will run over 9 months and you (and your care partner) will:

  • Need to participate in three telephone assessment interviews, where you will be required to complete a number of questionnaires relating to health and wellbeing.
  • Be randomly allocated to either the (a) intervention or (b) control group of the research study.

a.) The intervention group: This group will have 10 weekly online sessions with each session lasting up to 2 hours. Participants will learn about key skills in areas including: symptom management and healthy habits. Your care partner will receive an e-learning program following similar themes with some additional support.

b.) The control group: Like with a lot of research studies, some participants will be randomised to the control group, which means they will not receive the intervention from our research team. However, after study completion, both participants and families can receive the e-learning course comprising of the educational material used in the group.


Expression of Interest

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You can find out even more about the study by visiting the study website:


You can also watch a video from the lead investigators talking about how and why the study is being run:



For further information about this research study, please contact us on:

Jana Koch (Research Assistant)


Phone: (02) 9399 1116

Jessica Amos (Project Manager)


Phone: (02) 9399 1853


This research study is funded by The National Health and Medical Research Council.