Accessibility statement

Dr Anna Bramwell-Dicks
Lecturer in Interactive Media



I am an interdisciplinary lecturer in Interactive Media within the School of Arts and Creative Technologies. My research and teaching interests span different areas of the school but are primarily driven by an interest in the role of (new) technology, media and music in improving health, wellbeing and access and the relationship between different modalities (e.g. sound, haptics) and storytelling within these new media forms.

I joined the University of York in 2004 for my undergraduate degree in Electronic Engineering with Music Technology Systems. During my undergraduate degree I took a module on Interface Design and became fascinated by User-Centred Design and Psychology, so followed this with an MSc in Human-Centred Interactive Technologies. I then combined my interests in HCI and Music for my PhD in Computer Science, where I investigated the effect of music on transcription typing performance and experience. At various points since 2010 I have been employed as a Research Associate in CS. In these roles, I mostly worked on accessibility-focused HCI projects (including the EU funded i2web project; and most recently the Innovate UK funded SoundTact project). My roles within these projects have been quite varied, but I was typically been involved in designing and performing user evaluations (with blind and partially sighted users, and with web developers); running requirements interviews; and getting extremely lost in Milan. 

I then taught in CS for 2 years, before moving to the Department of Theatre, Film, Television and Interactive Media (TFTI) in 2015 as an Associate Lecturer in Interactive Media. In 2017 I became a lecturer in IM within TFTI on a teaching-focused basis, primarily teaching programming, empirical research methods and supervising projects. In 2021, I was a co-Investigator on the Co-Musicate project and also took a 2 year Research Fellowship secondment, funded by XR Stories, to focus on research and develop a research agenda within a project called ‘Destigmatising Disability in Past, Present and Future Stories’. In 2023 I returned to the School of Arts & Creative Technologies (ACT) as a lecturer on an academic research and teaching basis, where I continue to teach programming and empirical methods, but also teach about disability and accessibility and am continuing my research in this space.



The main driving force behind my research is the belief that technology, media and music all have an important role to play in society, particularly for improving health, wellbeing and access. This work manifests in various ways, whether that is on the SoundCeption project where we developed an App for blind people that enabled them to use their senses of hearing and proprioception together in a form of multimodal sensory substitution to access the content of visual images, or in the CoMusicate project where we explored how technology could enable adults with mental illness to make music together remotely, to connect socially and have a positive impact on their wellbeing, or through my disability representation research where I’m focusing on representation in new storytelling formats (including video games and Virtual Reality). From this, you can see that my research is primarily about people, and particularly disabled people. I always adopt a ‘nothing about us, without us’ philosophy in my research, and work closely with community groups. I am also autistic and have various (ongoing but mostly managed) mental illnesses, so am able to situate myself reflexively within the work that I do. As a slightly tangential research interest, I am also extremely fascinated by the power of music to affect how people feel, which is demonstrated through my work on the Sound and Music for Immersive Storytelling (SAMIS) project.

I currently (co-)supervise 5 PhD students:

- Silvia Mantilla-Wright (with Jonathan Hook): Musical empathy and video game narrative

- Tabby Holland (with Mariana López): Representation of non-visible illness disabilities in teen romance films

- Qiti Zhang (with Debbie Maxwell): Interactive Multisensory Immersive Experiences for visually impaired children to support development of social skills

- Callum Deery (with James Walker): Embedded questionnaires in video games

- Andy Egerton (with Mariana López): Configurable accessibility of immersive museum exhibits

I am open to supervising research students at both Masters by Research and PhD level, provided their proposed work aligns with my research interests (see above). 


Selected publications

  • Bramwell-Dicks, A., Petrie, H., Edwards & A. D. N., Power, C. (2013) Affective Musical Interaction: Influencing Users’ Behaviour and Experiences with Music in Music and Human-Computer Interaction Eds. Holland, S., Wilkie, K., Mulholland, P., Seago, A. Springer Verlag, London
  • Shu, W. & Bramwell-Dicks, A. (2022) Do People Matter? Presence and Prosocial Decision-making in VR. British Computer Society conference on Human-Computer Interaction. July 11-13, 2022, Keele, UK. Awarded Best Paper
  • Bramwell-Dicks, A., Petrie, H. & Edwards, A. D. N. (2016) Can Listening to Music Make You Type Better? The Effect of Music Style, Vocals and Volume on Typing Performance. The International Conference on Auditory Display. July 2-8, 2016, Canberra, Australia 
  • Swallow, D., Power, C., Petrie, H., Bramwell-Dicks, A., Buykx, L., Velasco, C. A., Parr, A. & O Connor, J. (2014). Speaking the Language of Web Developers: Evaluation of a Web Accessibility Information Resource (WebAIR). The International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs. July 9-11 2014 



Over the years I have taught on many different modules across different programmes and within different departments and faculties. I currently teach the following:

- Experience Evaluation (3rd year option)

- Web Application Design and Development (2nd year core)

- Disability, Accessibility and Representation in the Creative Industries (2nd/3rd year option)

I also supervise final year undergraduate projects, particularly those adopting scientific method within their approach. 

Contact details

Dr Anna Bramwell-Dicks
School of Arts and Creative Technologies
University of York
YO10 5GB

Tel: +44 (0)1904 32 5244