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Aboriginal Adolescents' Experiences with Racism Study

Find out how you can get involved as a young person HERE.

Information for Study Participation 

The following contains text from the information letter provided to all participants in the AAERS study:


Read this to find out about the Aboriginal Adolescents' Experiences of Racism Study (AAERS)

My name is Bep Uink, I'm a Noongar woman from South WA (Katanning, Tambellup regions). 
I work at Kulbardi Aboriginal Centre at Murdoch University and I'm researching the everyday racism experiences of Aboriginal teenagers.

I'm inviting you to take part in a study run by me and a team of other researchers. It's called the Aboriginal Adolescents' Experiences of Racism Study, or AAERS for short. 

Meet the rest of the team:

  • Murdoch University: Rebecca Bennett, Jessica Brand, Jenna Woods, Bec Gillis

  • Curtin University: Carrington Shepherd, Leah Cave

  • Telethon Kids Institute: Ashleigh Lin

  • University of Technology Sydney: Gregory Martin 

  • Deakin University: Yin Paradies

This research is voluntary, so it's your choice if you would like to be a part of it.

You can always say NO at any time without getting into trouble, even after you have taken part in the study. Email 

Why study racism?

  • Racism can hurt our physical, psychological, spiritual, and cultural health

  • Racism can occur in subtle, hidden, or unspoken ways

  • This "everyday racism" is sometimes referred to as microaggressions or interpersonal racism

  • We want to find out what microaggressions young Aboriginal people face, and how it affects them

What will I be asked to do?

Take part in 2 rounds of focus group discussions with resarchers held at Kulbardi Aboriginal Centre (Murdoch University), your school, or your organisation each lasting 1 hour, talking about: 

  • Your experiences of racism personally or witnessed 

  • A positive way you have responded to racism and microaggressions 

  • You will also be shown a list of common microaggressions, e.g., “you were watched closely or followed around by security at the shops”.


We will ask: 

  • Do the things on the list happen to you? 

  • Do other events need to be added to this list?

  • What are the top 10 most common microaggressions on the list that you and your friends face every day?


The ‘top 10’ list will be used to inform a new survey of microaggressions for future research projects. 


Give your thoughts on filling out an end-of-day diary (Daily Diary method) to capture information on racism from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander young people.


A member of the research team will contact your school or organisation 1-2 days after you have taken part in the study to remind you of the supports that are available 

Benefits and Risks
Like everything, there are pros and cons to joining the study.


  • Speak up about racism you experience in your daily life

  • After the focus groups you will be invited to a 40 minute workshop to help you learn ways to respond to racism 


  • Discussing racism can sometimes be upsetting or distressing.

A support person from your school or organisation will be allocated should you need support

You can also talk to a parent/guardian, or the researchers

Here are some helpful phone numbers in case you need them:

Lifeline: 13 11 14 (general)
13 92 76 (Aboriginal specific line)

If we think there is a risk of harm to yourself or others based on what you have said during the focus groups, we will legally have to report this to your school or organisation.

What happens to my information?

  • Researchers will audio record the focus groups

  • If you do NOT want to be recorded, that's ok, you can still participate 

  • In that case, just tell your teacher or a researcher

  • With you and your parent/guardian's permission, researchers will then email what you said to you to make sure we got it right. Write the email you would like us to send it to on your consent form

  • Everything you say is the "data" that we are collecting

  • Findings from the study will be published in a community-level report and peer-reviewed journal articles

  • For publishing we will mix what everyone said together, and take out the names of who said what

  • Young people will never be named, your names and details will be kept confidential. What they have said in focus groups will not be shared with your parent/guardians or your school or organisation

  • When your quote is being used in a publication, we will email you a copy of the quote before the public can see it to make sure we are using it correctly

  • See the Data Sovereignty page for more information on how your data may be used 

  • This research has been approved by the Western Australian Aboriginal Ethics Committee (WAAHEC HREC #1016), the Department of Education WA (D22/0676346), Catholic Education Western Australia (RP2022/29), the Murdoch University Human Research Ethics Committee (2022/187; 2022/176) and the University of Technology Sydney Research Ethics Committee (ETH23-8437).  

If you have any questions, please contact the researchers at
or Dr Bep Uink at (08) 9360 1783

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