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ABS152 - Using visual technology reflexively to study father engagement in four countries - a pilot study from a cultural historical perspective

3.1 Farther reaches of theoretical and methodological explorations
11:00 AM, Thursday 31 Aug 2017 (30 minutes)
This paper critically examines the contribution of visual technology for explicating young children’s perspectives of father engagement in home learning environments (HLE), as part of a project aiming to study how fathers engage in child development across different national contexts; where we understand development as the sociocultural genesis of a child’s mental functions. From this perspective, development is not already formed and consequently requires methodological tools that enable researchers to document and analyse children’s intention and engagement across activity settings. Visual technologies hold possibilities to do this. However, whilst they present an opportunity to look at the dynamics of children’s development, there is also a need to understand the implications of methods and technologies that form part of them, for the quality of research knowledge produced. At the present time, there is limited critical understanding about the research process when using visual technology for researching children’s development.
Accordingly, we ask:
How can we critically examine the use of visual technology to explore how fathers engage in child development within home environments, across four national contexts?
Drawing on footage of children in 12 families in England, Hong Kong, Norway and India, we critically reflect on how we use visual digital technology to explore father engagement from the child’s perspective, where the footage is child generated; but also where a reflexive visual research design provides researcher generated footage which enables the researcher to critically examine how the child is positioned in relation to the social situation and the technology used.
University of Bath
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