Everyday, digital media play a more important role in our society and in children’s lives. In the Netherlands, practically all children are online nowadays. Besides playing games, children use digital media for social gatherings, to create their own digital space and to find information as a support for learning.
Researchers report all kind of problems children encounter during information-seeking, because they are confronted with information systems that are designed by and for adults. Therefore, the last decade, many digital environments have been developed with a child-friendly interface, especially for children. Do these search environments really support children in effective information-seeking? And are these systems consistent with children’s cognitive needs and skills? What are the principles underlying children's search behaviour and how can we design search interfaces that are consistent with children's needs and skills and support them in effective information-seeking.
These questions are the subject of my PhD-research project named 'The Digital Youth Library'.