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Can technologies make a difference for hospitalized youth: Findings from research

Maor, D. and Mitchem, K.J. (2015) Can technologies make a difference for hospitalized youth: Findings from research. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 31 (6). pp. 690-705.

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Children and youth who are hospitalized for a short or long term become socially isolated from their family, school and classmates. As their isolation increases, so does their vulnerability as a result of disrupted schooling. Research studies suggest different ways of using technologies to overcome this isolation and support children during this critical time of their lives. With technology for children in hospitals becoming increasingly commonplace, evaluating how it is used and its impact on children's learning and well-being is necessary. In this paper, we systematically evaluated existing research on use of technologies for communication, support and educational purposes and its contribution to the well-being of hospitalized children. A rigorous selection process yielded 14 research articles meeting the following criteria: empirical studies, using technologies for network of support, targeting hospitalized children and adolescents and targeting learning or social and emotional well-being in the last decade. This review indicates that the use of technologies with children and youth in hospitals generally increased their potential for learning and improved connectivity with school. Our findings revealed that implementing digital pedagogies and creating online communities were helpful but underutilized features in the research.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Education
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing Ltd
Copyright: © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd
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