Toward a model for the study of children's informal Internet use

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Journal Article
Computers in Human Behavior, 2008, 24 (2), pp. 173 - 184
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Throughout history, the development and widespread use of new technologies has impacted human cognition and social structures. By integrating a range of cognitive and socio-cultural theories we are better able to understand the impact of technological tools, such as the Internet, on children in the context of their local and global communities. An integrated theoretical approach enables us to more comprehensively ascertain the potential of the Internet to significantly impact children's cognitive processes and the larger social implications of this global phenomenon. This paper presents a small-scale exploratory study that, through the development of an Internet-mediated learning model, examines the skills and characteristics of young, competent Internet-users engaged in informal Internet activities. At present, there is much conjecture on the ways in which the Internet may affect learning and this paper describes an approach to research that could inform future data collection procedures and analysis in empirical studies. © 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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