Reading Apps: An Exploratory Research on Children’s E-lit Reading Profiles

Abstract (in English): 

What kind of readers are we going to find with children’s electronic literature? Are“strong” and “weak readers” useful tags any longer? Are these digital reading skills and literary behaviors equal to those required with analogic texts? This paper presents an exploratory research on different children’s electronic literary reading profiles. We will analyze the affective relations of four 11–12 –year-old children with the digital works, their interpretative tendencies and their consideration of the literary properties that define this new literary paradigm.
For this purpose, we introduced five interactive tablets loaded with a selected corpus of literary apps for five months into the reading environment of an elementary classroom. Two pairs of students were selected based on their analogic literary reading profiles—two of them were considered strong readers and the other two “weak” ones—and interviewed in two different moments of the research process. Both interviews were recorded and transcribed for further analysis. The content structure of both interviews was designed based on a deep analysis of the particularities of this new reading context (Cassany, Prensky), as well as a close reading of the electronic works we selected for it, and the specific literary properties that defined them (Hayles, Ryan, Murray, etc.).
The emerging relations between student’s traditional reading skills and e-lit reading requeriments were analyzed in the light of contemporary children’s literary education studies (Chambers, Colomer, Tauveron, etc.), the above-mentioned theoretical works on electronic literature and ludologic taxonomies of gamers types. As a result of this multidisciplinary perspective, a qualitative and exploratory categorization of these four reader types is aims to help future researches of electronic literature and literary education.

(source: ELO 2015 conference catalog)

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Hannah Ackermans