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Xenia Danos

"Currently graphicacy does not explicitly feature within the structured general education curricula in Europe, a situation that is similar in many other countries, such as the US and Australia. Educationalists are often advised to use visual images as teaching aids, yet we know very little about how these are perceived by children with different abilities. The need to consider the potential for the development of a graphicacy policy within the curriculum is stronger now than ever" - Xenia Danos

Xenia’s academic career started with a BA in Design & Technology (D&T) followed by a PGCE in D&T for Secondary Education at Middlesex University. After teaching KS3, GCSE, and A-level D&T and KS3 Art & Design for 3 years in a UK school, she completed a PhD on Graphicacy at Loughborough University. She then moved to Cyprus where she worked in the Department of Education at the University of Cyprus for 2½ years. In collaboration with the head of the department, she ran the PGCE D&T course for preschool and primary school teacher trainees. She supervised the students on teaching practice and acted as a mentor and mediator between the university and the schools. Xenia now works as a researcher in the Department of Educational Sciences at the University of Cyprus..

Xenia's research so far, has concerned visual communication (graphicacy), which is the creative development and communication of ideas and information through images and symbols e.g. maps, diagrams and photographs. The power of images has wide possibilities and great potential for the enhancement of teaching and learning. Through her work she has identified and defined what graphicacy is, investigated how it is used across secondary school curricula, how children engage with it and ultimately what effects it has on students' learning. Her PhD research was based on determining students’ skills and abilities through assessing work completed in a classroom context in order to design and deliver robust strategies to enhance educational performance, from individual to national level.

Currently she is continuing her research on graphicacy through a European-funded project, looking to develop formative and summative assessment tools for graphicacy elements, as well as researching a new area of interest concerning entrepreneurship and creative behaviours in D&T, Science and Mathematics within school curricula.

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