Profile image for Sunil Bhar

Associate Professor Sunil Bhar

Associate Professor of Psychology, Chair Department of Psychological Sciences
PhD, University of Melbourne, Australia; Master of Arts (Clinical Psychology), University of Melbourne, Australia


Sunil Bhar is an Associate Professor of Psychology at Swinburne University of Technology. He is Chair of the Department of Psychological Sciences. He also directs the Wellbeing Clinic for Older Adults and Obsessive Compulsive Disorders Program at the Swinburne Psychology Clinic. He runs an active research lab focusing on the emotional wellbeing of older adults and the mechanisms of reminiscence and cognitive-behavioural therapies. He is a diplomate of the Academy of Cognitive Therapies, having spent 4 years working with Aaron Beck, MD investigating the efficacy of cognitive therapy for suicide prevention. Dr Bhar has maintained a clinical practice for over  20 years, and has integrated his clinical experience into his teaching and research.

Research interests

Aged care; Clinical Psychology; Mood Disorders

PhD candidate and honours supervision

Higher degrees by research

Accredited to supervise Masters & Doctoral students as Principal Coordinating Supervisor.


Available to supervise honours students.

Honours topics and outlines

Loneliness in older adults living in residential and communty settings: Nearly a quarter of a million Australians live in residential aged care settings. Despite many opportunities for social contact, a high proportion of residents may remain lonely. The factors that contribute to loneliness are poorly understood. This study aims to examine the prevalence of, and factors contributing to loneliness in residential aged care settings, compared to in community settings. 

Fields of Research

  • Health, Clinical And Counselling Psychology - 170106

Teaching areas

Aged care;Clinical Psychology;Counseling Psychology;Mood Disorders


  • 2015, National, OLT Citation for Outstanding Contributions to Student Learning, Office of Learning and Teaching (OLT)
  • 2014, National, Alastair Heron Prize for excellence in ageing research of practice, College of Clinical Psychologists, Australian Psychological Society
  • 2013, Swinburne, Faculty of Life and Social Sciences Award for Teaching Excellence, Swinburne University of Technology
  • 2012, Swinburne, Vice Chancellor’s Community Engagement Award, Swinburne University of Technology

Professional memberships

  • 2010 - 2016: Affiliate, Academy of Cognitive Therapy, United States
  • 2005 - 2016: Member, College of Clinical Psychologists (APS), Australia
  • 2000 - 2016: Member, Australian Psychological Society, Australia


Also published as: Bhar, Sunil; Bhar, S.; Bhar, Sunil S.
This publication listing is provided by Swinburne Research Bank. If you are the owner of this profile, contact us to update.

Recent research grants awarded

  • 2017: A digital prototype addressing loneliness in older adults *; Relationships Australia (Victoria)
  • 2017: Digital Storytelling with Older Adults *; Relationships Australia (Victoria)
  • 2017: Evaluating a wellbeing clinic to support older adults with mild to moderate dementia living in residential aged care settings *; Australian Government Department of Health
  • 2016: Can mobile apps be used to improve cognitive stimulation for people with dementia: A systematic review *; Barbara Dicker Brain Science grant
  • 2013: Applying Virtual Environments to Dementia Care *; Smart Services CRC: Services 2020
  • 2013: Development of What Works booklet *; beyondblue
  • 2013: Overcoming obstacles in the public mental health system: an investigation ofi ncreased engagement by people with depression *; Barbara Dicker Brain Science grant
  • 2013: The Disturbed Self: Selfhood and Psychopathology. A 2 day conference *; Barbara Dicker Brain Science grant
  • 2013: Training inpatient nursing staff to provide evidence based psychological care to older patients with anxiety, depression and dementia *; Barbara Dicker Brain Science grant
  • 2012: Genetic and brain function predictors of outcome in the treatment of hoarding disorder *; Barbara Dicker Brain Science grant
  • 2012: Life-logging: using computer-generated virtual environments to facilitate reminiscence therapy in dementia *; Barbara Dicker Brain Science grant
  • 2012: Mechanisms of effective treatments for reducing suicidal ideation in young people *; Barbara Dicker Brain Science grant
  • 2011: Physiological and mood correlates of in-vivo and recollected mastery experience *; Barbara Dicker Brain Science grant
  • 2010: The relationship between positive mastery recollections and hopelessness in older adults *; American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Pilot Grants

* Chief Investigator