Collaboration in Informal Learning Environments

Access and Participation in Youth Virtual Communities

Authored by: Yasmin B. Kafai , Deborah A. Fields

The International Handbook of Collaborative Learning

Print publication date:  February  2013
Online publication date:  March  2013

Print ISBN: 9780415805735
eBook ISBN: 9780203837290
Adobe ISBN: 9781136869556


 Download Chapter



Many after-school centers, community technology centers, and summer camps designed for youth have begun to incorporate technology. For instance, the Fifth Dimension and the Boys and Girls Clubs provide access to computer game play or learning of technical skills (e.g., Cole, 2006; Hay & Barab, 2001; Hirsch, 2005; Zhao, Mishra, & Girod, 2000). Some sites, such as the Computer Clubhouse (Kafai, Peppler, & Chapman, 2009), have further adopted an explicit focus on providing access to technology in underserved communities by engaging youth in collaborative design activities. Not only have learning technologies become part of informal learning environments, they have also become informal sites of learning in their own rite, virtual communities accessible to millions of youth around the world anywhere they can gain Internet access. Recent developments suggest that new virtual locations such as games, virtual worlds, and social networks have become as important for informal learning as their more physically based counterparts (Ito et al., 2008).

Search for more...
Back to top

Use of cookies on this website

We are using cookies to provide statistics that help us give you the best experience of our site. You can find out more in our Privacy Policy. By continuing to use the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.