Dr Abigail Jackson

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About me

I hold an interdisciplinary PhD, spanning The Arts and Social Sciences, titled: Movement, Technological Mediation and Embodied Interactions, in the education of children with autism. This project employed qualitative research, to develop innovative approaches within special educational needs (SEN) settings. I was funded by Arts and Humanities Research Council’s 3D3 Centre for Doctoral Training and was situated in the Transtechnology Research Department (School of Art, Media and Education) at Plymouth University. Alongside this, I completed a PGCert Therapeutic Play Skills and a PGCert Autism (Children) and both enhanced my understanding of applied psychology and qualitative research.

Through ethnographic research and anthropological participant observation methods, my thesis presented practice with autistic participants exploring the benefits of adapting how technologies could, and should, be approached in education. My thesis promoted holistic development through embodied interactions and person-centered interventions. This was particularly important in understanding the individual differences and social challenges of those with autism. In doing so I reviewed major theories surrounding personality, language acquisition, emotion, cognitive function, and sensory perception. 

My research to date has gone on to work within complex intervention development and evaluation with autistic participants. These have been interventions that focus on technological mediation through ipads and interactive environments. I am passionate about mixed method approaches and qualitative research.


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