Digital Finger Painting: A Qualitative Exploration of the Tablet Computer and its Artistic Implications in an Early Childhood Setting
Doctor of Education
Date of Defense
E. Louis Lankford, PhD.
The purpose of this study was to better understand the implications of the tablet computer for learning and, specifically, in the art classroom. A qualitative study was designed following grounded theory measures for data analysis in order to explore timely questions regarding the tablet computer and how young children react to such technology as a drawing tool. An early childhood center was accessed for this research, and 30 children between the ages of three and five years old consented to participate. Four educators and 35 parents were also enlisted in an effort to elicit substantive perspectives regarding the tablet and its artistic potential. Children were observed as they drew on an iPad® tablet and digital drawings created were compared to those made with crayons on paper. Additionally, collaborative art making with the tablet computer was encouraged, and children completed digital drawings in pairs. Semi-structured interviews shed light on what children enjoyed about the tablet computer as well as what they disliked about the technology. Parent and educator perceptions regarding the tablet computer as a learning and drawing tool were gathered through brief survey data and one-on-one interviews. Findings have been detailed through participants’ stories and documented thematically.
Ackermann, Sarah Nicole, "Digital Finger Painting: A Qualitative Exploration of the Tablet Computer and its Artistic Implications in an Early Childhood Setting" (2014). Dissertations. 201.
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