The University of Southampton
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Email:
a.james@soton.ac.uk

Abi James

Research Staff

I am a research fellow research with the Accessibility Team in Web and Internet Science Group at the University of Southampton investigating how to improve the design and evaluation of web and learning technologies to remove barriers for disabled learners. I spent 12 years as a product manager in the commercial assistive technology sector. This involved contributing to the whole development process for new learning technologies - from initial design, through development to commercial launch and user training. In parallel I was involved in commercial and academic research projects to evaluate the impact of assistive technology with a particular focus on access to e-text, writing and note-taking. More recently I have been involved in projects to design mobile apps, web services and software tools to improve usability and accessibility of digital materials and learning. As chair of the British Dyslexia Association New Technologies Committee I work with organisations to improve technology-based reasonable adjustments in exams and e-assessments as well as removing the barriers to accessing and adopting assistive technologies in education.

Research

Research interests

My research interests include:

  • use and impact of techologies by disabled learners;
  • accessible web development processes and techniques;
  • influences on technology adoption by disabled users, in particular the interface of design, usability and external support;
  • text to speech and note-taking technologies;
  • accessible e-assessment and use of assistive technology in assessment;
  • inclusive learning practices, particularly the impact of digital accessibility and e-text.

Projects

Publications

Evans, D.G., Draffan, E.A., James, A. and Blenkhorn, P., (2006) Do Text-to-Speech Synthesisers Pronounce Correctly? A Preliminary Study Miesenberger, K., Klaus, J., Zagler, W.L. and Karshmer, A.I. (eds.) At Computers Helping People with Special Needs, 10th International Conference, ICCHP2006, Austria. 11 - 13 Jul 2006. , pp. 874-881.

Draffan, E.A., McNaught, A. and James, A. (2014) eBooks, accessibility and the catalysts for culture change In Computers Helping People with Special Needs. Springer International Publishing. 7 pp, pp. 543-550. (doi:10.1007/978-3-319-08599-9_80).

Draffan, E.A., James, Abi, Wald, Mike and Idris, Amal (2016) Framework for selecting assistive technology user-participation methods Journal of Assistive Technologies, 10, (2), pp. 92-101. (doi:10.1108/JAT-01-2016-0007).

James, Abi, Draffan, E.A. and Wald, Mike, (2016) Learning through videos: are disabled students using good note-taking strategies? Miesenberger, Klaus, Buhler, Christian and Penaz, Petr (eds.) In Computers Helping People with Special Needs; 15th International Conference, ICCHP 2016 Linz, Austria, July 13–15, 2016 Proceedings, Part I. Springer. 580 pp, pp. 461-467. (doi:10.1007/978-3-319-41264-1_63).

Contact

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