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Evaluating interactive television models for young children

Hynd, A.R., Broderick, P. and Innes, J.M. (2007) Evaluating interactive television models for young children. In: Australasian Social Psychologists 36th Annual Conference, 13-15 April 2007, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia


Interactive media allow the viewer to alter program content on-line. Such media may benefit young children, but there has been little research. Using existing programs, we examined the attention, comprehension, and enjoyment of 4 and 5 year olds with 4 models of interactive compared with non-interactive TV. Choices were made with the remote control, either; 1) participating with program activities, 2) repeating or 3) customising content, or 4) making narrative choices. Interactivity, per se, was not beneficial. Specific models were associated with benefits; participation and repetition resulted in higher comprehension. Customised content had no impact. Manipulation of narrative disrupted comprehension and enjoyment. Successful interactivity builds upon the features of well-designed traditional children’s TV, namely opportunities for participation and content repetition. Implications for understanding the impact of changes in media technology will be considered.

Item Type: Conference Paper
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Psychology
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