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Personal profile

Research interests

I am interested in how new technologies might influence the social and cognitive development of children, especially children with developmental disorders like autism.



I graduated with undergraduate and masters degrees in Psychology from the University of Birmingham, followed by a PhD in Developmental Psychology at the University of Nottingham. I was an ESRC Research Fellow at the University of Nottingham, before becoming a Lecturer at the University of Edinburgh, and then a Lecturer and Senior Lecturer at the University of Strathclyde. I joined Heriot-Watt University in 2012 as a Reader.

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where Gnanathusharan Rajendran is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Robots Engineering & Materials Science
Autistic Disorder Medicine & Life Sciences
autism Social Sciences
Pupil Medicine & Life Sciences
Computer keyboards Engineering & Materials Science
Human computer interaction Engineering & Materials Science
learning performance Social Sciences
Technology Medicine & Life Sciences

Co Author Network Recent external collaboration on country level. Dive into details by clicking on the dots.

Research Output 2000 2019

An architecture for emotional facial expressions as social signals

Aylett, R., Ritter, C., Lim, M. Y., Broz, F., McKenna, P., Keller, I. & Rajendran, G., 19 Mar 2019, In : IEEE Transactions on Affecticve Computing.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access

Identifying Embodied Metaphors for Computing Education

Manches, A., McKenna, P. E., Rajendran, G. & Robertson, J., 31 Jan 2019, In : Computers in Human Behavior.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

female student

Blending human and artificial intelligence to support autistic children's social communication skills

Porayska-Pomsta, K., Alcorn, A. M., Avramides, K., Beale, S., Bernardini, S., Foster, M. E., Frauenberger, C., Good, J., Guldberg, K., Keay-Bright, W., Kossyvaki, L., Lemon, O., Mademtzi, M., Menzies, R., Pain, H., Rajendran, G., Waller, A., Wass, S. & Smith, T. J., 20 Dec 2018, In : ACM Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction. 25, 6, 35.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Open Access
Artificial intelligence
Intelligent virtual agents
Open Access
physical education
research method

Cultural Social Signal Interplay with an Expressive Robot

McKenna, P. E., Ghosh, A., Aylett, R., Broz, F. & Rajendran, G., 5 Nov 2018, Proceedings of the 18th International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents. ACM, p. 211-218 8 p.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Open Access
Signal processing

Activities 2012 2016

  • 4 Participation in conference
  • 3 Invited talk
  • 1 Membership of committee

Serious games for children: a developmental psychology approach (Keynote)

Gnanathusharan Rajendran (Speaker)
24 Mar 2015

Activity: Talk or presentationInvited talk

Wellcome Trust (External organisation)

Gnanathusharan Rajendran (Member)
17 Jun 201518 Jun 2015

Activity: MembershipMembership of committee

Edinburgh International Science Festival 2014

Gnanathusharan Rajendran (Participant)
10 Apr 2014

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in conference

Edinburgh International Science Festival 2008

Gnanathusharan Rajendran (Participant)
14 Apr 2014

Activity: Participating in or organising an eventParticipation in conference

Press / Media