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Future Internet 2015, 7(1), 50-66; doi:10.3390/fi7010050

Participatory Design to Enhance ICT Learning and Community Attachment: A Case Study in Rural Taiwan

Department of Commercial Design, Chung Yuan Christian University, 200, Chung Pei Rd., Chung Li District, Taoyuan City, 32023, Taiwan
Academic Editor: Roderick Graham
Received: 30 July 2014 / Revised: 23 December 2014 / Accepted: 26 January 2015 / Published: 2 March 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Digital Inequalities)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2112 KB, uploaded 2 March 2015]   |  

Abstract

This study used observation and interviews with participants in “PunCar Action” to understand how participatory design methods can be applied to the education of rural individuals in information and communication technology (ICT). PunCar Action is a volunteer program in which ICT educators tour the rural communities of Taiwan, offering courses on the use of digital technology. This paper makes three contributions: First, we found that participatory design is an excellent way to teach ICT and Web 2.0 skills, co-create community blogs, and sustain intrinsic motivation to use Web applications. Second, PunCar Action provides an innovative bottom-up intergenerational ICT education model with high penetrability capable of enhancing the confidence of rural residents in the use of ICT. Third, the content of basic courses was based on applications capable of making the lives of elderly individuals more convenient, and the advanced course was based on the co-creation of community blogs aimed at reviving the core functions of communities and expanding local industry. Our research was conducted with the use of a non-quantitative index to measure ICT learning performance of participants from a rural community. The results show that PunCar Action emphasizes interpersonal communication and informational applications and creates a collaborative process that encourages rural residents to take action to close the digital divide. View Full-Text
Keywords: collaborative learning; computer-mediated communication; digital divide; digital inequality; participatory design; rural studies; social class collaborative learning; computer-mediated communication; digital divide; digital inequality; participatory design; rural studies; social class
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Huang, Y.-T. Participatory Design to Enhance ICT Learning and Community Attachment: A Case Study in Rural Taiwan. Future Internet 2015, 7, 50-66.

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