Virtual Learning

What does AVERIL hope to achieve?

AVERIL aims to advance education, research and inclusive learning for people of all ages with a variety of disabilities associated with speech, language and communication using online video.

What are some of AVERIL’s Research and Development initiatives?

Some past, present and ongoing research projects:

  • Viewtalk has been developed in order to move into the important area of distance learning for local, regional, national and international purposes.
  • Videonet – this internet video conferencing network was developed between individuals, schools and organisations using different systems such as – iVisit, Camfrog, ViaVideo, MSN and Skype.
  • Mobile phone Video Calling Technology-in partnership with Hutchinson 3G-a significant piece of research has been carried out showing the need for using this type of visual communication with deaf people and how a one handed sign language can be used.
  • Race-on-line/Race to ICT – this work constitutes the Deafax London work concerning Black, Asian and Ethnic Minorities Deaf people and their use of ICT modules to assist with Essential English, identity and cultural diversity and interactive communication skills development for employment.
  • What do you want? This looks at ways to increase the success rate and opportunities for young deaf learners by using ICT. Webcams are being used to link up 6 schools so that they share curriculum activities. This programme is to link with the Virtual Learning Centre.
  • The significance of ICT for the reading, writing and communication skills of deaf People”… Leverhulme Research Programme.
  • Visual Literacy-continue to work with teachers of the deaf in adopting a highly visual approach to the teaching of reading,writing and communication skills for deaf children

Enterprises AVERIL has explored and developed:

  • DeafText/Exe Libris –this is a bespoke software system which was originally developed by Exeter University to help overseas students to gain an acceptable standard of English. The essence of the system is to input text and then strip it down to the bare essentials.
  • UK Master Teachers of the Deaf Programme-this will follow the work undertaken in the USA –see again www.deafed.net
  • Speech Recognition– the intention is to work with Microsoft and Speech Tracker on its use in the classroom involving teachers ,deaf children and others with speech challenges.
  • Automatic Text Display-using computer based speech recognition of teacher’s speech in the education of deaf children.
  • Healthy Living through Sport –the idea is to develop a series of ICT modules around activities which link in with the Olympic Games in London 2012 and Deaf Sport UK.
  • Digital Emotional Subtitling (DES)-from research carried out into subtitling some 80% of those using it are not deaf or hard of hearing. DES will bring the text alive via colour, print, size etc.
  • Deaf Babies/Pre-School Deaf Children-the use of touch screen technology for improving language acquisition.
  • Virtual Signing Avatar – to aid communication for deaf people who use BSL,ASL etc
  • Home Access to Learning Programme –to continue to work with parents, children and young people within the home environment with the specialised use of ICT, advice, guidance, working with respective schools to enhance learning and improve reading ,writing, communication and essential life skills .