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Reimagining Health and Disability Through Relationships in Virtual Worlds

, University of Oregon, United States ; , Western Washington University, United States

Journal of Interactive Learning Research Volume 28, Number 4, ISSN 1093-023X Publisher: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE), Waynesville, NC

Abstract

This study explores how visual narratives stemming from the experience of healthy embodiment in social virtual worlds, especially for individuals living with chronic disease or disability, both fosters relationships and more broadly impacts physical and emotional life experience and overall quality of life. It does so through the lens of social capital cultivation as the most important driver of uses and gratifications in virtual and digital media environments.
Specifically, this paper presents a case analysis of a community of people with disabilities (PWD) as well as a group of people with Parkinson’s disease (PD) who have formed an extraordinary bond through their PD support group. Through more than 2,000 hours of participant observation and group discussion and interview transcript analysis and digital artifact analysis from virtual designs and experiences that cover all aspects of life with disability, one of the most powerful themes that emerged from their interactions is the value of their relationships.

Citation

Davis, D. & Moscato, D. (2017). Reimagining Health and Disability Through Relationships in Virtual Worlds. Journal of Interactive Learning Research, 28(4), 315-340. Waynesville, NC: Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE). Retrieved July 20, 2018 from .