Accounting for the Child in the Design of Technological Environments: A Review of Constructivist Theory

January 1st, 2009 | RESEARCH

Technology designers are faced with the challenge of accounting for the breadth of children's experiences in their interactions with technology, even as the field of human-computer interaction has maintained a primary focus on "use" as the main interaction paradigm. To address this challenge, I propose that designers account for children's relationships with technology by considering six facets of interactional constructivist development: embodied, situated, dynamic, intentional, social, and moral. To support this proposal, I first review the intellectual development of interactional constructivist theory. This recounting is followed by analyses of relevant discourse on technology design with respect to the six facets of interactional experience. This work provides a framework for supporting designers' understanding of children as multifaceted individuals developing in the context of rapidly changing technological environments.


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Team Members

Nathan Freier, Author, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute


Publication: Children, Youth and Environments
Volume: 19
Number: 1
Page(s): 144

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Audience: Museum | ISE Professionals
Discipline: Education and learning science | General STEM | Technology
Resource Type: Peer-reviewed article | Research Products
Environment Type: Media and Technology | Websites | Mobile Apps | Online Media