(Written by Pamela) We haven't met but this introduction is included because her work (related to Africa and education) was mentioned by one of her colleagues during a Global Vlillages event organised by Franz Nahrada on August 10th 2012:
Her profile begins:
Denise's research focuses on the potential of new media technologies such as participatory Web 2.0 and 3D virtual learning environments to enhance the educational and social participation of young people with disabilities, as well as exploring the pedagogical potential of these environments to engage learners in the higher education context.
She has led three national teaching and learning projects funded by the former Australian Learning and Teaching Council (now the Office for Learning and Teaching, Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations) and she was co-project leader of a fourth project funded by the Carrick Institute for Higher Learning. Of these nationally funded projects, three have been successfully completed, and a fourth focusing on design as a catalyst for creative problem solving in graduate and undergraduate studies is due for completion in October 2012. One of the recently completed projects funded by the ALTC involved the design and development of an open source accessible 3D virtual learning environment, as well as the development of pedagogical guidelines for teaching in virtual worlds, ethical guidelines and guidelines regarding intellectual property issues relating to teaching in 3D virtual learning environments. This project received national recognition through one of Denise's peer reviewed papers published in the Telecommunications Journal of Australia in 2010, which won the inaugural Telstra-TJA Award for Telecommunications and Disabilities. The proceeds from the award are being used to further research in this area.
This research into the design and development of accessible virtual learning environments led to an invitation by both the Gauteng and the Limpopo Provincial Governments in South Africa to implement ICT solutions in basic primary and special schools in South Africa.