Abi Thirumanickam

Dr Abi Thirumanickam

Lecturer - Speech Pathology

School of Allied Health Science and Practice

Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences

Eligible to supervise Masters and PhD (as Co-Supervisor) - email supervisor to discuss availability.


Dr. Abi Thirumanickam is a lecturer in the School of Allied Health Science and Practice in the Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences. She has a Ph.D. in Speech Pathology (Flinders University) and a Bachelor of Speech Pathology (Hons) (Flinders University).

Abi is also a Speech Pathology Australia Certified Practising Speech Pathologist and has practised as a speech pathologist in the public and private sectors, across health care, community and education settings.

She has clinical, research and teaching experiences in communication and language development, communication difficulties, complex communication needs, autism spectrum disorder and assistive technology, including augmentative and alternative communication.

Abi's primary research interest is in finding ways of enhancing the communicative and social participation of people who communicate differently. This can be for people with disability, people with complex communication needs, people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Abi is particularly interested in capacity building, communication accessibility and active participation and inclusionShe is interested to evaluate the evidence for currently available, as well as new peer, parent and partner mediated interventions. She is interested in evaluating programs intent on building partner capacity for incidental intervention strategies. Abi is also interested in evaluating the use of technology (video-based intervention, gaming technology, etc) for incidental teaching principlesAbi is also interested in exploring the impact of current health care practices, including speech pathology practises for individuals from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds 

Abi's PhD focused on the use of video-based intervention, specifically video self-modelling and video modelling (peer model) to facilitate conversational turn-taking in adolescents on the autism spectrum, who had complex communication needs and required the use of augmentative and alternative communication system. 

Abi is available to supervise Honours, Masters and Ph.D candidates.

Current available projects: 

Research project 1: 

Title: The use of point-of-view video modelling for facilitating conversational skill development for autistic individuals

Project description: Video-based intervention is an evidence-based practice for promoting various skill development for autistic individuals. However, more information is required to understand the benefits of point-of-view methods of video based intervention in facilitating social interaction, and specifically the development of conversational skills in autistic individuals. Challenges in social interaction, including reciprocal conversation is highlighted in the diagnostic criteria for Autism Spectrum Disorder. The aim of this project will be to determine the current use and evidence for point-of-view video modelling in facilitating conversational skill development for autistic individuals. 

Projects available for: 3rd year research placement students, Honours students, HDR students (Masters and PhD)
Location: ECMS, Helen Mayo North
Research project start: Semester 1 and 2
Special requirements: N/A

 

Research project 2: 

Title: The use of Serious Game framework in designing educational games

Project description: Technology has become a natural aspect of our lifestyles, and it is a highly motivating tool for children and adolescents with and without disability. Currently, there are many technology-based educational tools for children and adolescents - however, there is limited evidence about the design priciples. The aim of this project is to evaluate the use and evidence for serious games framework in game designed for educational purposes. 

Projects available for: 3rd year research placement students, Honours students, HDR students (Masters and PhD)
Location: ECMS, Helen Mayo North
Research project start: Semester 1 and 2
Special requirements: N/A

 

Research project 3: 

Title: The impact of visual representation in changing mindset/perception and attitudes about people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds in Western society. 

Project description: We know that media plays an important role in influencing perception and the development of beliefs. The aim of this project is to understand the impact of visual media on changing people's beliefs and attitudes about people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds. 

Projects available for: 3rd year research placement students, Honours students, HDR students (Masters and PhD)
Location: ECMS, Helen Mayo North
Research project start: Semester 1 and 2
Special requirements: N/A

 

Research project 4: 

Title: The use of cisual representation to teach about serious health conditions and promoting healthy lifestyles to people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds in Western society. 

Project description: We know that media plays an important role in influencing perception and building knowledge. The aim of this project is to understand the use of visual representation to educate people who use English as a second language, about chronic health conditions and promoting healthy lifestyles.  

Projects available for: 3rd year research placement students, Honours students, HDR students (Masters and PhD)
Location: ECMS, Helen Mayo North
Research project start: Semester 1 and 2
Special requirements: N/A

  •      Healthy Development Adelaide Travel Grant (2018)
  •      Flinders University Research Travel Grant (2016)
  •      Golden Key International Honours Society
  •      APEX AUTISM PhD RESEARCH GRANTS (2014)
  •      Flinders University Academic Internship 2014
  •      Flinders University Research Scholarship (2012-2015)

Abi teaching experience spans across speech pathology and disability topics, including development across the lifespan, communication and language development, communication difficulties, augmentative and alternative communication and autism spectrum disorder.

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  • Memberships

    Date Role Membership Country
    2017 - ongoing Member Healthy Development Adelaide Australia
    2016 - ongoing Member International Society of Augmentative and Alternative Communication Canada
    2016 - ongoing Member Australasian Society for Autism Research Australia
    2009 - ongoing Member Speech Pathology Australia Australia
    2006 - ongoing Member Golden Key International Honour Society Australia
  • Position: Lecturer - Speech Pathology
  • Phone: 83132316
  • Email: abi.thirumanickam@adelaide.edu.au
  • Campus: North Terrace
  • Building: Engineering & Maths Sciences, floor 4
  • Room: 4 06
  • Org Unit: School of Allied Health Science and Practice

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