Komathi Ale received both her B.A. and M.A. degrees in Communication Studies from the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. Komathi’s research focuses on the impact of information and communication technologies for development (ICTD), with specific interest in addressing issues related to learning in developing countries. She hopes her research will bridge gaps in practice and theory, particularly in determining the effectiveness of emerging ICTs in the domain of education.
In the past, she gained experience conducting independent research with projects in India, where she spent several months in the field initiating education programs surrounding the evaluation of One Laptop per Child (OLPC) laptops in village primary schools. More recently, Komathi collaborated on a project to empirically assess literacy impact of digital textbooks in Peru. She has also done social network analysis in ICTD research for understanding information exchanges and relations within community settings. Beyond a focus on developing regions, Komathi is also working on examining the value of mobile phone applications for the promotion of healthy eating among low-income populations in South Los Angeles. Her work can be found in international refereed publications and conference proceedings, and has been presented at major international conferences.
Komathi’s dissertation research focuses on autonomous learning with computers among primary schoolchildren in urban Lima, Peru. She recognizes the role of teachers as facilitators in technology-enabled classrooms, providing autonomy support to learners. Given her background in applying rigorous qualitative and quantitative methodologies, her study employs mixed methods to investigate teaching and learning processes for self-learning using digital technologies.