Hand-drawn concept-mapping as a participatory visual method

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To explore both the potential and current impact of digital technologies on schooling in two rural school communities, the use of hand-drawn concept maps as a participatory method of inquiry was chosen to enable school community members to express their views. This approach enabled the ideas and issues they considered most important to be expressed with minimal direction or interference from the researcher. A variety of stakeholders from two school communities were asked to produce two hand-drawn concept maps and then participate in a focus group or interview to elicit further data. This graphic-elicitation approach was used to encourage participants to further express and expand on their ideas that they had expressed in the concept maps themselves, and to provide participant validation of the content of the concept maps. The results of this method of data collection, drawing on a range of analytical approaches, showed that the participant-generated, hand-drawn concept maps allowed participants to express their beliefs, perceptions, ideals, values, and emotions about digital technologies in a way which revealed the complexity and sometimes contradictory ideas about technology use in their schools. Using hand-drawn concept maps as a participatory visual method was also particularly useful for showing affective orientations in the responses of participants.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages18
JournalVisual Studies
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 15 Nov 2022


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