Steps to engaging young children in research: volume 1: the guide

SCIE Social Care Online
University of Brighton
Publication date:
01 January 2014


A resource developed for academics and practitioner researchers wanting to include the perspectives of young children in their research. The resource begins by providing a series of six steps for developing a research process with young children, focusing on consideration of capability and capability, developing ethical processes, building supportive, trustful relationships, choosing methods and communication using different media, and flexibility in different contexts. It provides detailed examples of multiple methods suitable for use in a variety of global contexts. These methods are clustered into groups, which include child-led tours, methods that are carried out in-situ, visuals that can be used for free expression or structured activities, narrative and performance, and play and games. Alongside detailed consideration of how such methods can be used and developed in a variety of contexts with children from five years of age, detailed examples of their use is also provided. This includes research using: doll play, modelling clay and candle-lit stories in South Africa; accompanying children and gaining children’s opinions using ranking methods in Nepal; and play with puppets in India. In addition, comprehensive case studies that examine the method in use and the types of data produced are provided, including: developing early years settings in Ethiopia, addressing abuse in schools in Uganda, children’s views on aspects of schooling in England, exploring wellbeing in Peru; children’s perspectives of water supplies in Tibet, and addressing transition from kindergarten to school in Iceland. 'Steps to engaging young children in research: volume 2: the researcher toolkit' accompanies this guide.