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Title: Utilisation of digital media in improving children's reading habits
Author: Jurf, Dima Rafat Mohammad
Awarding Body: University of Bradford
Current Institution: University of Bradford
Date of Award: 2012
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Although digital media has been exploited to improve digital libraries, social networking sites, and book promotion for adult and child stakeholders, but encouraging children who have the choice to either read from a book or on a screen remains limited worldwide, including Jordan. This interest has meant that data about children's reading habits were needed, and the present study was intended as a contribution towards this aim. Interviews were conducted with Jordanian writers, publishers, child specialists, and various children's cultural centres. The managers and personnel unanimously showed that Jordanian children are not good readers and that a limited number of books are published for children as there are actual boundaries preventing Jordanian writers from publishing books. In particular, subjecting the typical sorts of children's websites - 'Club Penguin', 'PBS Kids', 'A Story before Bed', 'Baraem', 'Storyline Online', and 'Raneen' - to evaluation showed that 'Club Penguin' got the highest rank among the other websites in terms of multimodal features, usability, and language, while 'PBS Kids' got the highest rank regarding interactivity, and 'A Story before Bed' got the highest rank in reading activities. Although it was realised that most children were satisfied with the aspects of usability and ease of use rather than the structure or the aesthetic of the website, and were more attracted to the websites that provide multimodal features such as special characters, narration, gesture, and interactivity. The targeted websites' parameters obtained from the survey were used as guidance in the design structure of the KITABAK website, as a virtual reading environment for children's reading practices. The evaluation results that were obtained showed that there is a significant correlation towards encouraging children's reading habits and reading from printed books accompanying the website; girls showed more interest in reading iv than boys; and there is an obvious willingness for the adaptation of the website as a part of the Jordanian school curriculum. In addition, the KITABAK website was accepted significantly more than 'Club Penguin', mainly because the KITABAK website has facilities, games and reading activities. Also, results showed that children who were subjected to testing the KITABAK website for a one-week period proved to accept the website significantly more than those who were subjected to testing it once.
Supervisor: Goodall, Mark; Allen, Patrick Sponsor: Applied Science University
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Reading ; Printed books ; Amman/Jordan ; Design factors ; Multimodal features ; Digital media ; Children ; KITABAK website