Bilikis Banire is a Ph.D student in computer science and engineering at Qatar Foundation member Hamad Bin Khalifa University. She is currently leading Qatar Foundation’s innovative project to non-invasively measure the attention spans of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Q&A on autism research using VR technology

1. Why are attention spans important? What issues arise when teachers fail to recognise signs that children with autism need a break or are frustrated, for example?


A team of four Year 9 students Whalley Range High School in Whalley Range, Manchester, have fought off tough competition from hundreds of schools across England, Scotland and Wales to become the national champions of Shell’s annual science competition, The Bright Ideas Challenge. The team won £5,000 to spend on state-of-the-art science and technology equipment for their school. 

The team’s innovative future energy idea took centre stage at Make the Future Live, Shell’s four-day festival of bright energy ideas, which took place last week at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London.

  • Over half of teachers feel grades will go up by delivering new experiences such as climbing Everest through VR

A squeeze on budgets have meant schools are having to deliver the curriculum with less. As such, they are having to think creatively about solutions to enhance teaching and learning and explore technology they wouldn’t necessarily have considered before.