This project takes further the actions and recommendations of 1999's AccessAbility project Deaf Australia Online. That project identified options to improve online access for Deaf Australians. Starting with the Deaf user's perspective to understand the activities they carry out in their daily lives, focus groups explored how they communicate with friends and family, study, shop, and use government services. Desirable online services and actions were identified and reviewed by the project's reference group and a forum at the 1999 World Federation of the Deaf Congress in Brisbane. A development path enabling progress towards access and use of these desirable services was identified, and initial investigations were conducted and documented .
This new project is conducting trials of prototype online
services identified by the Deaf Australia Online project. The
following services are being trialed:
Technical requirements for use in Australian conditions will be determined, for example inter-working, standards, and bandwidth required. Terminal specifications will also be determined. The project will also examine expected costs for access in various locations: set up and ongoing operation, and consideration of options for government subsidy.
Deaf Australia Online II is funded by a grant from the AccessAbility Program of Australia's Federal Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts. The following organisations are conducting the project: the Victorian Deaf Society; the Centre of Excellence for Students who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing at Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE (NMIT); the Centre for International Research on Communication and Information Technologies (CIRCIT) at RMIT University; the Australian Association of the Deaf; and Australian Communication Exchange (ACE).
Janice Knuckey is the Coordinator of the Centre of Excellence for Students who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing at Northern Melbourne Institute of TAFE (NMIT). Janice is a teacher of the deaf with many years of experience in the Deaf community. In 1999 and 2000 Janice jointly coordinated the national Deaf Australia Online projects and has conducted research on the status of Deaf and hard of hearing students in TAFE in Victoria. Janice is secretary of the Victorian Council of Deaf People.Claudia Slegers
Claudia Slegers is Associate Research Fellow at the Centre for International Research on Communication and Information Technologies (CIRCIT) at RMIT University. Claudia has been researching the use of communication services in the home and workplace. In 1999 and 2000 she jointly coordinated the national Deaf Australia Online projects, which examined the use of online services by sign language users. Claudia is currently completing her MA by research in Linguistics, examining communication patterns between sign language users and hearing Australians at work.