Online Training – Learning Management System

An introduction to consumer and community involvement in health research

These online courses for researchers, consumers and community members, use content from our face-to-face training workshops. They were first developed in 2007 by Anne McKenzie AM and in 2009 in collaboration with Bec Hanley (UK consultant) for Telethon Kids Institute and The University of Western Australia. 

Over 3000 researchers, consumers and community members from across Australia have attended workshops to learn and share experiences and ideas about the ‘how and why’ of implementing consumer and community involvement in research.

Whilst these online courses are focused on consumer and community involvement in health research, all principles and learnings discussed in this course are directly applicable to any areas of research. The underpinning message is to support researchers, consumers and community members to work in partnership to make decisions about research priorities, policy and practice.

  • The course for consumers and community members provides general information about health research and being effective as a member of a research team.
  • The researcher course is an introduction to consumer and community involvement in research. Participants may be required to complete this online training before attending face-to-face or virtual training about the ‘how and why’ of involvement.

Scroll down to read more about the Course presenters.


Participant feedback

“Gave me some great ideas, feedback, opened my eyes to issues I had not previously considered.”

“This training has given me the knowledge to ensure community consultation is meaningful for both the researcher and the consumer. Not just box ticking.”

“As a 2nd year PhD student I aim to incorporate consumer involvement in all of my research moving forward. This would be valuable for all PhD students.”

Meet the trainers


Anne McKenzie AM

Anne has worked as a consumer advocate for almost three decades. She commenced working as the Consumer Advocate and Involvement Program Manager at The University of Western Australia and the Telethon Kids Institute in 2004. Anne established WA’s Consumer and Community Health Research Network at the Western Australian Health Translation Network.

In 2019 she returned to work at Telethon Kids Institute to manage the Community Engagement Program. Anne led the establishment of Telethon Kids CONNECT, which acknowledges the contribution the community makes to research activities at the Institute.

Anne is a life member of the Health Consumers Council of WA and was appointed to the Order of Australia in 2015 for her significant contribution to health and research advocacy.

In 2021, Anne received the National Health and Medical Research Council’s Biennial Award for Consumer Engagement in recognition of her promotion of consumer and community involvement and engagement over the past 20 years.

Bec Hanley

Bec has spent the past twenty years working to promote the involvement of people who use services in health care and health research in the United Kingdom.

She was the director of the INVOLVE Coordinating Centre for five years – which is a centre funded by the Department of Health in England to promote and support public involvement in health, public health and social care research (

During this time, she worked in partnership with people who use services, and professionals, to develop policy and practice on involvement in research. She is the lead author of INVOLVE’s acclaimed ‘Involving the Public in NHS, Public Health and Social Care Research’, now in its third edition.

Bec also runs training courses for researchers on patient and public involvement in research.


Belinda Frank

Belinda is the Community Engagement Manager at Telethon Kids Institute. In 2016 she started work at the Telethon Kids Institute as the Consumer Advocate then at the WA Health Translation Network’s Consumer and Community Health Research Network. In 2019 she joined the Community Engagement Team at Telethon Kids Institute as the Involvement Coordinator. In this role she has been responsible for supporting consumers, community members and researchers to work effectively in partnership.

Belinda commenced her consumer advocacy work in 2002, following the birth of her son with a complex health condition. She was a board member of HeartKids in Victoria and Western Australia and an inaugural member of HeartKids Australia.

From 2013 – 2016 Belinda was the State Manager of HeartKids WA. Belinda currently serves on state and national research committees as a consumer member.

The importance of community involvement


It’s something that should be done, in my view, simply because it is the right thing to do, my experience in over 10 years now of embracing the ethics of community participation is that it does in fact produce benefits for the researcher when you come to actually producing your results the community becomes your ally and they will assist you disseminating and advocating for those results where it really counts.


Emeritus Professor D’Arcy Holman

The University of Western Australia



If we have the attitude that involving consumers and the community will improve our research, it means our research may be more relevant. We may go into a new research area because the community thinks it’s important and we respond to it. The way that we then feed our research back to people means that that will enable them to use the research information in ways that improves their health and their well-being.


Professor Fiona Stanley
Former Director and Patron, Telethon Kids Institute