Exploring digital support for the student transition to university through questionable concepts

Lisa Thomas, John Vines, Pamela Briggs

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

New students face challenges when they make the transition from school to university. Existing digital technologies used during this transition can sometimes increase the stressors associated with change. In order to explore ways forward for technology design in this space, we developed a brochure of questionable concepts. The concepts were grounded in findings of our prior research, yet were also intended to act as provocations to promote discussion in workshops involving 32 first year university students. Our analysis of workshop discussions documents the diverse issues students face around social bonding, their home environment, and their academic performance. Our findings challenge assumptions made in prior work about the ease of transition to university. We demonstrate how questionable concepts can play an important role in prompting ‘safe’ conversations around stressful life events for adolescents.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-92
Number of pages14
JournalPersonal and Ubiquitous Computing
Issue number1
Early online date4 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2022

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Life transitions
  • University students
  • Questionable concepts


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