News article

Funding for immersive technologies for pupils with autism

20 June 2018


Search is on for virtual and augmented technology projects with the potential to help children with autism

The Northern Ireland Education Authority (EA) has up to £150,000 to invest in projects that use immersive technologies to improve the educational outcomes for pupils with autism.

About one in 40 pupils in Northern Ireland has a diagnosis of autism. The condition affects the way they relate to people, situations and their immediate environment. Immersive technologies, such as augmented and virtual reality, have the potential to improve their education, emotional and social skills.

The EA wants to develop educational tools that can be used within a classroom environment. These should target the needs of 3 to 19-years-old with an autism spectrum disorder diagnosis.

In the first phase, the EA will issue contracts to organisations for feasibility studies. More contracts could be awarded in a further two phases to take the best ideas forward and test them at scale.

The competition is run under the Small Business Research Initiative (SBRI), which helps the public and private sectors come together to solve challenges facing government.

Competition information
The competition opens on 30 June 2018, and the deadline for applications is 23 July 2018.

Any organisation can apply, provided they can demonstrate a route to market for its idea. Successful projects will attract 100 per cent funded development contracts. Tender documentation to apply will be available on e-TendersNI from 30 June 2018.

Find out more about this competition, and how to apply.

The EA will hold a briefing event for those interested in applying. The event will take place at the EA’s Dundonald office on 29 June 2018. Register to attend the immersive technology competition briefing.