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Lunds Univeristy (ULUND), Sweden

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Lund University is one of Sweden’s largest and most comprehensive universities. Today it has about 34,000 undergraduates and 3,200 postgraduates. Students can choose from among some 50 educational programmes and over 800 separate courses. The University has about 6,500 employees. Two-thirds of them are teachers and researchers, while the rest are technical and administrative personnel. There are about 350 professors in roughly the same number of departments and divisions.

The University is divided into faculties, each with a considerable degree of autonomy. There is a board with overall responsibility for each faculty. The faculties are: Technology (Lund Institute of Technology, LTH), Science, Law, Social Sciences (including the School of Economics and Management), Medicine, Liberal Arts and Theology, and the Performing Arts (the Academies of Music, Art, and Theatre). There are also various centres that cross faculty and departmental boundaries. These include the International Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics, the Centre for Women’s Studies, the Max-laboratory, the Food Centre, the Flexible Reality Centre, the Centre for European Studies and the Centre for East and Southeast Asian Studies. Most of the University departments are located in Lund, but the Academies of Music, Art, and Theatre are in Malmö, where the university also has several departments of medicine. The University is also expanding its activities in Helsingborg, where tuition is given chiefly in technology, but also in other subjects.

Lund University has a strong international profile, collaborating with hundreds of universities all over the world. Through various agreements, such as the European Socrates programme, the university sends out about 1,000 students annually and receives the same number. The University gives more than 200 courses and several master’s programmes in English. In addition, Lund University is part of the Öresund University, along with ten other institutes of higher education in Skåne and Sjælland. Öresund University is a collaborative body whose aim is to further strengthen the development of knowledge in the Öresund region.

Department of Design Sciences

The Department of Design Sciences' research and educational programmes moved into a new building designed specifically for that purpose in September 2002: the Ingvar Kamprad Design Centre. It is meant to inspire faculty, students and the world outside of the University to new ideas and cross-disciplinary ventures in design that would otherwise not be possible. Several new laboratories have been established: the Reality Lab, Experimentation Hall, Usability Lab, Full Scale Modelling Lab, Low Vision Enabling Centre, Aerosol and Climate Labs. The Department of Design Sciences has 90 employees of whom 9 are full professors and 20 postdoctoral researchers. There are 40 graduate students. The annual turnover is 60 million SEK, half of which comes from external financing.

Certec, Division of Rehabilitation Engineering Research

Certec is the Division of Rehabilitation Engineering Research; Department of Design Sciences, Lund University's Institute of Technology. The aim of our research and education is to improve opportunities for people with disabilities through the development of useworthy technology, new design concepts and new individualized methods for learning and searching. Our work begins and ends with the individual, though the process and results are often of a genuinely technical nature.Certec employs about 20 people; nine are researchers (PhDs or licentiates) while seven are doctoral students. Our annual budget is approx. 12 million Swedish kronor. Certec offers more than ten courses annually with over 400 participants. Two thirds study at a distance over the internet. The courses are intended for civil engineering and industrial design students, professionals in the fields of health care, education and care giving, as well as for people with disabilities. A new course in universal design is being offered for professionals in the technology sector. Educational programs over the internet enable not only previously unimaginable individualization, but also closer contact among the participants. The fruitful net discussions are most likely the reason why we have a 90% completion rate - a high figure in courses for working professionals.

The [new window] Certec web site is also a part of our educational effort, with an average of 700 visitors a day, staying an average of 15 minutes.

Though we are part of an institute of technology, we have much in common with educational and medical research. While rehabilitation engineering research often deals with exterior tools, the person is always foremost: the priority is "the individual and technology" not "technology and the user. "Our objectives are very similar to those of medical research: to cure, alleviate and/or comfort. Certec’s primary field of research is “IT and Learning” in a disability context. Our focus is on how a combination of information technology, design and educational methodology can influence the way people with disabilities learn and search.

Key Personnel:

  • Charlotte Magnusson, assistant professor.Charlotte Magnusson, PhD has currently two particular areas of interest. The first is concerned with the use of haptic devices, and how haptics and audio can be used to make different types of complex information and virtual environments more accessible. The second is concerned with the use of simulations/computer generated visualizations for the transfer of knowledge (particularly tacit knowledge). Charlotte is also an experienced programmer, with particular experience from interactive multimodal applications. Charlotte is the leader of the haptics group at Certec, and is also responsible for the Usability Lab at the Department of Design Sciences.

  • Kirsten Rassmus-Gröhn, PhD student. Kirsten’s research concentrates on the combination of haptic and sound interfaces for blind persons. Since 1997 she has been a member of Certec's Haptic Group. Her research has to a great deal centered on the PHANToM, a haptic computer device and interface which makes it possible to feel virtual objects. Her focus is on interfaces based on a combination of sound and touch interaction, especially for blind computer users. She is particularly interested in examining orientation and spatial information in different ways and what modality suits what information best.

  • Björn Breidegard, PhD student. Björn’s licentiate thesis entitled An Executable Computer Model of Learning includes developing the executable computer model and implementing it as an interactive, visual and audio Windows application. Björn has also developed alternative input devices such as the [new window] Minimeter and he has been investigating the use of facial expressions and eye movements as alternative means of input for persons with severe brain injuries. Björn has recently developed interactive PocketPC based PDA applications, and explored different ways to control the environment. Björn is an experienced programmer, who has worked particularly with different algorithms for image- and sound processing as well as interactive Windows-applications

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