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Designing Digital Interactive Instructions for Children’s Construction Play

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Although digital interactive technology offers innovative, scarcely explored types of instruction, conventional analog paper booklets remain the main instruction format for children’s construction play. We examined how a fan-built, digital interactive instructions prototype affected children’s construction play compared to an analog booklet. We studied two LEGO building tasks among 20 eight-nine year-old boys. Ten used the prototype on an iPad, 10 the booklet. Using a quasi-experimental research design built on cognitive load theory, we found notable differences in the two construction play processes. Participants with the analog booklet had a faster, more fluent process, while the digital prototype group was more often distracted and seeking help. We propose basic design recommendations for digital interactive instructions for children’s construction play, i.e., include a rotational feature, animations, pace control, few buttons, and realistic colors.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 36th European Conference on Cognitive Ergonomics : (ECCE’18)
Number of pages8
Place of publicationNew York, USA
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Publication year5 Sep 2018
Article number5
ISBN (print)978-1-4503-6449-2
Publication statusPublished - 5 Sep 2018

    Research areas

  • Digital and analog instructions, cognitive load, construction play, LEGO

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