Angela Meraviglia

Young Children and Digital Media

Using a human-centred design approach to understand and address the challenges around young children’s digital media use within the parent-child context

Stress on parents leads them to using digital media as a tool to keep their children occupied while they have a moment to themselves or complete tasks. This results in unsupervised digital media use of children aged 0-5 which poses several content related and developmental risks.

In order to create a holistic intervention which leads to more sustainable change a combined design intervention was co-created with parents. Two levels of the problem were addressed; the unsupervised digital media use of young children and stress on parents. This intervention consists of three concepts: Millie the family friendly platform, the community space, and the job sharing campaign, which are elaborated on in the video above.

Together the intervention is directed at children and parents. The platform offers children safe content and assisted mediation as well as practical information for parents. The community cafe, co-working, and connecting space provides parents an opportunity to de-stress, nurture their relationships and build a support network. With job sharing as the end goal, the campaign aims to provide parents with an improved work/life balance.

This thesis followed a human-centred design method, inspired by a combination of the double diamond model, and design thinking. It uses divergent and convergent thinking and consists of the six phases shown in figure 1. The loops show iterations that were constant and ongoing throughout the process. For example, additional research was conducted outside of the official research phase and continued throughout much of the project. The methods used in each phase are specified in the diagram

The iceberg model shows the level at which the three concepts intervene. The event level is observable, the metaphorical tip of the iceberg above the water. The patterns, structures, and mental models are invisible forces below the surface, which cause the event level.

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