About me

My studies…

I graduated with my PhD in Media Studies in December 2013. I submitted through the Centre for Film and Media Studies at the University of Cape Town under the supervision of Dr. Marion Walton and co-supervision of Assoc. Prof Mastin Prinsloo from the School of Education. Before I was Dr Pallitt, I specialised in Interactive Multimedia Production as an undergraduate and went on to English Literature (Honours) and Media Studies (MA) at UCT.

Me and Marion take a 'selfie' on grad day.
Me and Marion take a ‘selfie’ on grad day.

Gender identities at play: children’s digital gaming in two settings in Cape Town

My PhD thesis investigated children’s gaming relationships in two out-of-school settings in Cape Town. My study extends audience reception research to account for children’s ‘readings’ of digital games within their peer relationships. Children interpreted digital games as gendered media texts, using them as resources to perform a range of gender identities for peers. They continued familiar playground practices such as dramatic role-play in their play with digital games, defining gendered territory, and also playing with heterosexual relationships and sexuality. They preferred less-strongly-gendered games for play with the opposite sex. Children also negotiated game rules to orchestrate social scripts, to amuse their peers and send up authority through ‘remix’ strategies. In some cases, digital gameplay involved transgression and parody of adult discourses about childhood innocence, age and gender norms. Children played games in ways unique to the fieldsites, where specific spatial arrangements, turn-taking and time constraints informed varieties of play. Click here to access my thesis.

My work…

A day in the life of… from Nicola Pallitt on Vimeo.

Part of our monthly meetings @CILT_UCT is presenting 'A day in the life of…' Each month a colleague from the 3 teams gets to present in a format of their choosing. Here's mine:) I think it gives a good sense of who I am, what I do and what I'm passionate about. Thanks to Rondine Carstens for filming, editing and directing lol:)

Throughout my postgraduate studies, I have been actively involved in a range of  innovative teaching projects involving educational technology at UCT in various capacities from educational researcher, to providing assistance with technical implementation. I also taught a UCT Summer School course on using social media for the public, a second year Media Studies seminar and have presented a range of workshops for UCT staff and students. In addition to tutoring Media Studies students at various levels, I have assisted on a range of technology-related research projects. HIghlights include the Shuttleworth Foundation’s ‘Mobiles for Literacy’ project where I worked as a research assistant (2009-2010) and am one of the researchers involved in UCT’s laptop initiative. I currently work for the Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT) at the University of Cape Town. Having already obtained course credits in the School of Education, I intend on studying towards another degree in Higher Education Studies in 2014. I am still deciding whether to go the diploma or Masters route.

View my CV and publications here.

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