MPsych (Clin), PhD in Clinical Psychology- UNSW Sydney
BPsych (Hons I)- University of Sydney
I am a Postdoctoral Fellow at Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing (CHeBA) and a clinical psychologist. I obtained my PhD in Clinical Psychology and Master of Psychology (Clinical) from UNSW.
I have an interest in social connections, social cognition, social determinants of health and mental health in older adults. My research includes meta-analyses of longitudinal cohorts of cognitive ageing to identify risk and protective factors for healthy ageing and developing novel interventions to help older adults to stay socially and mentally healthy.
I was the Study Coordinator for the SHARED (Social Health And Reserve in the Dementia patient journey) project from 2019-2022. The SHARED project was an international collaboration designed to study how social, biological and psychological factors interact to predict the onset and course of dementia across the lifespan. In 2023, I was the Study Coordinator for the Sydney Memory and Ageing Study 2 (MAS2) project, which involved following older adults over time to understand the biomarkers, lifestyle factors and digital biomarkers implicated in cognitive decline.
In 2020, the Dementia Australia Research Foundation (DARF) Pilot Grant funded my research to co-design and pilot a novel social cognitive skills intervention for older adults with cognitive impairment. Subsequently, the DARF 2022 Fellowship ($405,000 over 3 years) funded my research to conduct a RCT to evaluate the effectiveness of the co-designed social cognitive skills intervention in improving social, cognitive and mental health in older adults with cognitive impairment.
CHeBA Profile: https://cheba.unsw.edu.au/our-people/dr-suraj-samtani
Australian Psychological Society
Australian Clinical Psychology Association
2023-2026: Samtani, S., Henry, J., Brodaty, H., Davison, T. A randomised controlled trial of a co-designed social cognitive skills intervention for older adults with cognitive concerns. Dementia Australia Research Fund Fellowship 2022 ($405,000): https://www.dementia.org.au/research/foundation/our-researchers/suraj-samtani-0
2021-2022: Samtani, S., Henry, J., Brodaty, H., Sachdev, P. A novel social cognition intervention for older adults with cognitive impairment: Co-design and pilot study. Dementia Australia Research Fund Seed Grant 2021 ($75,000): Funding Success in Dementia Australia Research Foundation Grants | Centre for Healthy Brain Ageing (CHeBA) (unsw.edu.au)
My research focuses on understanding the intersection between psychosocial factors, changes in the brain and healthy ageing. This research program includes analyzing longitudinal datasets of ageing, examining neuroimaging data, and conducting qualitative interviews to understand the social, psychological and biological pathways involved in healthy ageing. My funded research focuses on co-designing a novel social skills training program for older adults living with cognitive impairments.
Australia Dementia Research Forum: ADNeT workshop: Navigating a Career in Dementia Research - 31 May 2022
PROBUS: Social connections and happiness: How to maintain good mental health and relationships as we age - 10 May 2022
Older Persons Mental Health Service: Social connectedness for mental health - 27 Oct 2021
Youth Neuro Australia: Demystifying Brain Research: Through the lens of an international dementia research collaboration – 18 March 2020
My teaching interests combine psychology, healthy ageing, and neuropsychology. I provides guest lectures for the UTS Master of Pharmacology program and University of Sydney Brain and Mind Research Institute postgraduate program.
I was previously a Sessional Lecturer at NYU Sydney from 2015-2020 where I taught Cognition; Multicultural Counselling; and Child and Adolescent Brain Development: From Neuroscience to Applications.