Study level

  • PhD
  • Master of Philosophy
  • Honours
  • Vacation research experience scheme


Faculty of Science

School of Computer Science

Topic status

We're looking for students to study this topic.

Research centre


Associate Professor Laurianne Sitbon
ARC Future Fellow
Division / Faculty
Faculty of Science


This research is part of a Future Fellowship project funded by the Australian Research Council. You will join a team of researchers and research students in the school of computer science, with expertise in the disciplines of human computer interactions and data science.

In broad terms, the project is seeking to understand how the meaning of images can be computed and used in the design of intelligent interfaces which can be used by and support people with intellectual disability.

The visual interactions of interest to this research may be embedded in a variety of technologies, including:

information access technologies (eg. search engines)

  • assistive technologies (e.g. AAC)
  • social technologies (e.g. social media or games)
  • conversational technologies (e.g. voice assistants)
  • tangible technologies (e.g. robots, IoT, or wearables).

Research activities

The preferred approach for this project is an iterative design research approach, which employs co-design and ethnomethodology at its core.

You will:

  • use or build functional prototypes as a dialogical probe for contextual enquiry
  • conduct or participate in co-design workshops with adults with intellectual disability and a range of stakeholders they wish to engage with.

Analysis of the literature and critical analysis of your findings will form an essential part of the research.

Depending on your skills and preferences, you could be building and/or evaluating prototypes with a focus on the interaction aspects, and/or on the algorithmic aspects.


As part of your project, you may design, build or validate a new piece of technology (VRES, honours or Masters), or use design as a methodology to advance knowledge in interactive intelligent systems by offering a new theory or a new methodology (PhD).

You will be expected and supported to publish your findings in high impact venues, and to present your work to an international audience.

Skills and experience

Excellent students with a strong background in either computer science, interaction design or psychology and an interest and some experience in the other disciplines are ideally suited to this project.

You will need excellent communication skills, particularly in writing. For PhD applicants, this should be evidenced by a research publication.


You may be eligible to apply for a research scholarship.

Explore our research scholarships



Contact the supervisor for more information.