Research digital skills training 2021
Digital video and the early learning lab
Dr Annette Henderson, Senior Lecturer, Department of Psychology
The Early Learning Lab, Auckland (ELLA) is a research group in The School of Psychology at The University of Auckland devoted to better understanding infant and child development based on groups of children rather than on individuals (Fig 1). Their studies often involve playing interactive games, watching videos, solving puzzles, or discussions about actions and events they’ve observed. At ELLA the goal is to use this knowledge to give our society’s youngest members a brighter future.
Current studies include deconstructing early communication investigating the characteristics that are unique to how infants and parents communicate with one another via a digital interface; family resilience and wellbeing over a two-year time span; an ongoing longitudinal cooperation study that examines the development of prosocial behaviours (helping, sharing, and cooperating) in young children; and second language development study in early childhood and cross-cultural research. to test the effectiveness of a new language-learning tool.
Anyone interested in participating in these studies can find more information on their website – https://www.earlylearning.ac.nz/
Picture of the Lab group.
The Early Learning lab contains a series of rooms including a warm-up room where children play a few games to build rapport and trust before a session begins. After that, a caregiver and child accompany the experimenter to one of the observation rooms where the experiment begins. These include:
- a dedicated video lab where the children are shown a sequence of different short scenes.
- A hidden video camera records each child’s response to the scenes played onscreen, measuring “looking time” – the length of attention paid to each scene.
- a multi-camera room where children play with a peer or … where behaviours and interactions are recorded
- an eye tracking room where infants watch videos (e.g. of two people interacting or cooperating) and gaze attention is measured through eye-tracker technology.
Recording and Encoding behaviour
Responses are recorded and analysed using a dedicated software programme. Working with Science Application Specialists and the Centre for eResearch, ELLA have designed a multi-video input recording system, mechanisms to analyse the behaviours and then store and share the information on local network drives and Dropbox. The lab have also worked with CeR around adopting data management practises for file storage and sharing. Initially DVD’s were created where participants requested a copy of their child’s data and posted through the mail. This information is now shared electronically using password protected private links using the university’s Dropbox enterprise system and shared only with the participants for a limited time period, saving researcher’s time and providing a simple means of access for participants.
For more information visit https://media.preziusercontent.com/converted/b/9/d/caaf3ad7327fe27c6e2d3406a70e9b15160ec.mp4
Picture of the rooms.