Sarah Blunden, PhD

Editorial Board Member

Department of Paediatric Sleep
Central Queensland University, Australia

Contact Sarah Blunden, PhD

Department / University Information


Dr. Sarah Blunden is a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at the Appleton Institute, specialising in Paediatric sleep. Dr Blunden, psychologist (BA Psychology Honours, MSocSc, PhD, MAPS), is the founder and director the Australian Centre for Education in Sleep. Dr Blunden has spent the past 10 years researching, treating and lecturing on children's sleep both nationally and internationally, as well as delivering education and information sessions to the community, educators and health care professionals. Dr Blunden is recognised as an authority on children's sleep and is widely published in the field. Dr Blunden is a member of The Australian Psychological Society, The Australasian Sleep Association and International Pediatric Sleep Association. Dr Blunden is passionate about communicating the importance of sleep to communities. This passion developed during her early years of sleep research and it became apparent that there was a need for sleep education in the community. Dr Blunden also directs the Paediatric Sleep Clinic based in Adelaide, South Australia for diagnosing and managing sleep problems in children and young people.

Research Interest

Dr. Sarah Blunden's research interests include: Sleep disorders, Sleep medicine, Paediatric Sleep.


1. What makes an article top quality? 

Response: Recent references,  scientific language, in depth and good critical analysis particularly in the discussion, a replicable methodolgy.

2. Do you think that journals determine research trends?

Response: Journals can selectively publish papers that the editors and target audience prefer. I think journals have a duty to publish all arguments about one topic  and so if they are to publish articles that go against the trend, but are evidenced based they can determine the trends of argument. It HAS to be objective though……..

3. What makes a good position paper?

Response: Good argument. Very good understanding of the current literature and why or why not it is lacking.  It must be as objective as possible and not derogatory to any other researcher. Ego must not get in the way.

4. What are the qualities you look for in an article?

Response: Good argument. Very good understanding of the current literature and why or why not it is lacking.  It must be as objective as possible and not derogatory to any other researcher. Ego must not get in the way.

5. Can you give us a broad indication of the types of themes a scientific journal should cover?

Response: Laboratory research, clinical and applied research in the chosen field.

6. What sorts of research methods and frameworks do you expect people to use, and how will they balance conceptual and applied research?

Response: RCTs are clearly gold standard. But we should publish not just RCTs, because community based research and even non controlled research are always a precursor to the higher quality research studies a so they also need to be published. It is difficult to publish important data without an RCT sometimes .

7. How would you describe the journal’s mission and editorial objectives to our readers?

Response: To offer a research into practice translational research journal, which deals with the science behind the delivery of therapeutic services in sleep medicine. The editorial objectives are contained in the information above.

8. If you could be granted dream articles, what would they be on?

Response: 1.    Indigenous sleep health.
                     2.    The real life world of sleep health in poorer communities – the balance between what the studies say should happen, and how it does happen……

9. Are there any particular areas which you would like to see, or expect to see, collaborate?

Response: In paediatric sleep medicine, all areas of allied health and primary care and education should be collaborating. Sleep health is the poor cousin to diet and physical activity, numeracy and literacy…the thing is, they are ALL dependent on sleep.

10. How does the research published percolate through to practitioners?

Response: Through specific journals and targeted conferences. Increasingly via online PD courses  by specialist organizations.

11. How can a publisher ensure the authors/readers a rigorous peer review and quality control?

Response: Make sure that the process of submission and review is quick and PRECISE. Quality control is at risk when there is payment for publishing.

12. Your editorial policy is to be eclectic and welcome perspectives from other disciplines and schools. How does this translate into the types of contributions you encourage?

Response: When the authors are clever enough to make their discipline ‘talk’ to the discipline in question. If for example a dietician submits a apare not about sleep medicine but about a new aspect of the connection between the two, this will encourage that.

13. What do you see as the merits of journals, as opposed to book series, as a means of scholarly communications?

Response: Book take longer to publish (sometimes, depending on the journal!!). A book needs to be on a subject that is either necessarily going to be current just immediately or must be current forever. Foer example, a book on infant sleep physiology will be pertinent for a long time. An article on media usage in young children at bedtime, will be out of date very quickly.

14. How do you differentiate Journal of Sleep Disorders: Treatment & Care with other journals in the field?

Response: It has a more applied focus and a broad inclusiveness. It is young and needs some ironing out of some hitches.

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