University of Jyväskylä

Dissertation: A Framework for Children's Participation in Online Environments

Start date: Nov 28, 2014 12:00 AM

End date: Nov 28, 2014 03:00 PM

Location: Seminaarinmäki, Seminaarinmäki, S212

KTuukkanen, Terhi/kuva Sanna VatanenM Terhi Tuukkasen defends her doctoral dissertation in Sociology ”A Framework for Children's Participation in Online Environments”. Opponent Associate Professor Atte Oksanen (University of Tampere) and Custos Professor Terhi-Anna Wilska (Jyväskylän yliopisto). The event is in Finnish.

The dissertation is published in the series Jyväskylä Studies in Education, Psychology and Social Research, number 510, 184 p., Jyväskylä 2014, ISSN: 0075 4625, ISBN: 978 951 39 5935 7.It is available at the University Library’s Publications Unit, +358 (0)40 805 3825,


Online environments are an essential part of children’s everyday lives today. The objective of this study was to develop a framework for children’s online participation by exploring reasons, practices and perceived effects of 10-15-year-old children’s online participation. The empirical part of the study consisted of the analysis of children’s online discussion, survey and interviews with children, parents and teachers. The results indicated that children participate in online environments mainly to socialize with others. Children also consider virtual worlds as arenas for action. In virtual worlds, they play, create virtual persona, communicate with others, perform commercial activities, express themselves, participate in community activities and organize activities. Children, parents and teachers perceived many positive and negative effects in online environments that can be seen as opportunities and risks. The perceived effects included learning and socialization, a sense of community and empowerment, antisocial behavior and the threat to security.

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