Visual Methods

Over recent decades, academic researchers have shown a spotlight upon visual modes of inquiry among children and youth. Projects exploring youthful viewpoints through drawing, photography, videography, mapmaking, diagrams, time lines, and other imagery have seeped across many fields, including sociology, anthropology, geography, and applied research. This flurry of interest can be traced to two factors: (1) the aim of social researchers to directly immerse their inquiry in children’s perspectives and social worlds, coupled with (2) contemporary appreciation for visual-based communication and understanding.

Structured experiments, questionnaires, and laboratory-based studies have been typical methods of developmental psychologists, but a recent alternative to developmentalism has taken hold: child-centered inquiry. Child-centered inquiry seeks to give voice to children as social actors important in their own right. Spurred on by the ...

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