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Designing New Forms of Digital Augmentation for Learning Outdoors

Y. Rogers, D. Stanton, M. Thompson, M. Weal, S. Price, G. Fitzpatrick, R. Fleck, E. Harris, H. Smith, C. Randell, H. Muller, C. OMalley, Designing New Forms of Digital Augmentation for Learning Outdoors. Proceedings of the Third International Conference for Interaction Design and Children. ISSN not known, pp. 1–9. June 2004. PDF, 412 Kbytes.


Ubiquitous and mobile technologies provide opportunities for designing novel learning experiences that move out of the classroom. Information can be presented and interacted with in a variety of ways while exploring a physical environment. A key issue this raises is when, where, what and how much? Our research is concerned with the design, delivery and interaction of digital information when learning about ecology outdoors. We present a framework of the different forms of digital augmentation and the different processes by which they can be accessed. Using the framework, we designed an outdoors learning experience, aimed at encouraging students to carry out contextualized scientific enquiry and to reflect on their interactions. Pairs of 11-12 year olds explored a woodland and were presented at certain times with different forms of digital augmentation. Our study showed that this kind of exploration promoted interpretation and reflection at a number of levels of abstraction.

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