Who We Are

Our team is made up of PhD students and researchers based in Cork Institute of Technology. Our research project is based in the Nimbus Centre in Cork, and is focused on exploring new technologies and forming communities to enhance STEM learning in schools. It is part of the H2020 UMI-Sci-Ed project (umi-sci-ed.eu).



Sarah Hayes is a PhD student in Cork Institute of Technology, based in the Nimbus Centre. She graduated from Cork Institute of Technology with a First Class Honours in BA (Hons) in Multimedia in 2015. She has a strong interest in HCI and Tangible Interaction. Her areas of study during her undergraduate degree included physical computing, web design and development, illustration, 2D and 3D animation, and 3D game design. Her research in the Nimbus Centre is focused on Tangible Interaction and Data Representation – specifically, developing digital physicalized data representations to aid STEM learning in pre-third level students.

Research Interests: Tangible Interaction; Human-Computer Interaction; Ubiquitous Computing; Interaction Design.


Michelle O’Keeffe is First Class Honours Graduate of BA (Hons) in Multimedia at Cork Institute of Technology (2015). Her final year project was to design and develop an artefact that could be used to enhance a child’s experience of a heritage centre or museum. She worked in a group with two others to create “Puzzlebeo”, an interactive, multimodal jigsaw puzzle and interactive wall nodes which were designed for use in the Titanic Heritage Centre in Cobh, Co. Cork. She was responsible for the user testing and the user evaluation as part of the project. This was when she developed a key interest to research this area of evaluation and pedagogy further. Michelle also has experience working as a digital info-graphic designer for BreakingNews.ie/The Irish Examiner where she completed a three month internship from June – September 2015. She also worked as a part-time Digital Marketing Intern for “Brandmagic” in Little Island, Co. Cork from March – September last year.

Research Interests: Pedagogy; evaluation methods; communities of practice; UMI technologies

Current Research Projects: Exploring the potential of UMI technology to enhance students’ learning of and attitudes towards STEM subjects.