Reviewed “It’s Complicated” and “The App Generation” for JoCAM

Vicky Rideout invited me to write a book review for the Journal of Children and Media this past year, on two recent, high profile books that deal with issues of digital youth. I’m happy to report that the book review is out, and I believe is fully available for download for the public. Please check it out here:

Ahn, J. (2014). Book Review – It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens; The App Generation: How Today’s Youth Navigate Identity, Intimacy, and Imagination in a Digital World. Journal of Children and Media8(3), 313-316.

Designing and Using Social Media for Childrens’ Science Learning

How can we design and use social media with children? It’s a complex issue that is less explored in the research literature (for a myriad of reasons related to policy, safety, convenience etc.). Add onto that the complexity of “learning” science; how could we use social media to promote science learning for children?

I’m really excited to share our paper, which will be presented at the CSCW 2014 Conference in February, called “Selfies for Science”. It’s a case study of our 2-year design process of a social media app for kids called ScienceKit, and how new types of collaborative learning configurations can happen when we implement it in an informal science program.

Check out the paper here.

IDC 2013: Social Media and Learning Papers

My colleagues and I presented several papers at IDC 2013 related to our work with designing social media and alternate reality games for learning! Check out the papers below, as well as some cool videos that showcase this work:

Bonsignore, E., Hansen, D., Kraus, K., Visconti, A., Ahn, J., & Druin, A. (2013).  Playing for real: Designing alternate reality games for teenagers in learning contexts. In Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Interaction Design and ChildrenNew York, NY. [PDF]

Ahn, J., Yip, J., & Gubbels, M. (2013). SINQ: Designing social media to foster everyday scientific inquiry for children. In Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Interaction Design and ChildrenNew York, NY[PDF]

Ahn, J., Gubbels, M., Yip, J., Bonsignore, E., & Clegg, T. (2013). Using social media and learning analytics to understand how children engage in scientific inquiry. In Proceedings of the 12th International Conference on Interaction Design and ChildrenNew York, NY. [PDF]


How Can We Think About Social Media and Education Policy?

The education world is scrambling to catch up with the implications of today’s ubiquitous, social media environment.  We’re familiar with stories about teacher firings and cyber-bullying.   The latest dustup has been the recent legislation in Missouri that forbids teachers from having any private interaction with students online.  This means no friend-connections on Facebook or private messages between students and teachers.  All interaction must occur publicly.  Of course, there’s been huge push-back and uproar to this shortsighted policy and many such controversies are sure to come in the education world as we deal with new media.  But how can we as education leaders think about these policy issues?

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