Research area 11: ECE-Tech - Early Childhood Education and Technology

KINDknow research area 11

The aim of this package is to explore, develop and contribute to the understanding of professional digital competence, attitudes towards and use of digital technology in different pedagogical contexts. We aim to create knowledge of how digital technology in different ways can serve as an artefact for pedagogical activities, children's play and child-centred exploration. The projects are based on both qualitative and quantitative methods. 


We have ongoing projects with an extended international network with Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, Turkey, Portugal, England, Jordan, Ukraine and Russia. Based on previous studies of professional digital competence, use of digital technology and attitudes towards technology in pedagogical contexts we are currently working on a larger international study to develop an understanding on the global development between cultures and frameworks. This contributes to a deeper understand of what it is that drives, affects and limits professional use of digital technology in kindergartens. 

Kindergarten practitioners as technology mentors: A kindergarten-university research partnership from Norway (PUST) 

This project will attempt to develop a sustainable practice for kindergarten practitioners’ professional digital competence, developed through workshop-style conversations. The project is in collaboration with the University of Stavanger and will potentially include the University of Eastern Norway and the University of Oslo as well. The aim of the research partnership project is to foster professional learning through workshop-based practitioner-university collaborations. The approach rests on the establishment and support of a practitioner-researcher professional community. The participating practitioners are encouraged to reflect on their practice and engage in discussions with each other and the researchers. Both researchers and practitioners act as one community of learners. This approach follows collaborative inquiry embedded in practitioner study groups, expanded to researchers’ active engagement. The design is a qualitative case study involving research teams from two universities and two groups of practitioners with ca. 20 practitioners in each university group. Researchers will act as participant-observers in the group meetings. Data sources include audio-recorded interviews with all group members (if ethical permission granted), field notes of each workshop session and artefacts produced by the participants during the sessions. Practitioners will be interviewed about their attitudes towards digital technologies at the beginning of the first workshop session and at the end of the fourth workshop session. The analysis will follow analytic induction with triangulation and identification of main themes. 

Internet of Toys 

This study explores children’s play with the Internet of Toys - internet-connected toys – and partitioners’ perspectives and attitudes towards children’s play with IoToys. The study explores children’s ecological worlds. and their everyday experiences. The project is a collaborative project between four countries (Norway, UK, Australia and Greece). 

Research Questions: 

- What are parents and practitioners' dispositions towards children ages 3-7 years engaging with internet-enabled toys? 

- What are the ecological factors that shape young children’s experiences with internet-enabled toys? 

- What are the characteristics of children’s play with internet-enabled toys in home and early childcare? 

A cross-cultural exploration of the use of touchscreen technologies with children under 3 years of age 

The purpose of the study is to investigate the ways in which 0-3-year-old children are using touchscreen technology such as smartphones, ipads and similar both in Norway and in other countries. The first stage of the project involved collecting data from parents via an on-line survey named. The second stage of the project involved early childhood educators’ views, perspectives and practices. Methods include both quantitative (survey) and qualitative (focus group interviews) (Fotakopoulou et al. 2020, Dardanou et al. 2020). The next stage of the study will focus on children’s own experiences with use of touchscreen technologies in early childhood settings.  Research aims to highlight different cultural and context perspectives and experiences with their 0-3s use of this technology, to compare experiences and exchange good practices between the different countries. 

Research questions: 

  1. What are the beliefs and experiences of early childhood educators of the three countries around the use of touchscreen technologies with children under 3 years of age? 
  2. Are there significant similarities and/or differences in educators’ beliefs and experiences around the use of touchscreen technologies with children from under 3 years of age between the three countries? 
  3. What are the parental views about 0-3 year old children’s use of touchscreen devices in the three different cultural contexts at home? 
  4. In what way are dominant cultural discourses related to the perceptions and concerns of parents regarding the use of touchscreen devices by their 0-3 year old children? 


Madsen, S. S. og Thorvaldsen, S. (2021, in press). Are Teacher Students' Deep Learning and Critical Thinking at Risk of being Limited in Digital Learning Environments? Teacher Education in the 21st Century - Emerging Skills for a Changing World (ISBN 978-1-83968-793-8).

Thorvaldsen, S. og Madsen, S. S. (2021, in press). Decoding the digital gap in teacher education – Some perspectives across the globe. Teacher Education in the 21st Century - Emerging Skills for a Changing World (ISBN 978-1-83968-793-8).

Madsen, S. S. (2020). What is the motivation of Norwegian and New Zealand teacher educators for using digital technology when teaching? Nordic Journal of Comparative and International Education (NJCIE) 2020; Volum 4 (2). ISSN 2535-4051.s 42 - 63.s doi: 10.7577/njcie.3826.

Thorvaldsen, S. og Madsen, S. S. (2020). Perspectives on the tensions in teaching with technology in Norwegian teacher education analysed using Argyris and Schön’s theory of action. Education and Information Technologies: Official Journal of the IFIP technical committee on Education 2020. ISSN 1360-2357.s doi:

Madsen, S. S. og Thorvaldsen, S. (2019). Conceptualising a Dynamic Technology Practice in Education Using Argyris and Schön's Theory of Action. Springer 2019 (11937) ISBN 978-3-030-35342-1. ISSN 0302-9743.s 291 - 300.s doi: 10.1007/978-3-030-35343-8_31. (

Madsen, S. S., Archard, S. og Thorvaldsen, S. (2019). How different national strategies of implementing digital technology can affect teacher educators. A comparative study of teacher education in Norway and New Zealand. Nordic Journal of Digital Literacy 2019; Volum 13 (4, 2018). ISSN 1891-943X.s 7 - 23.s doi: 10.18261/ISSN.1891-943X-2018-04-02.

Madsen, S. S., Thorvaldsen, S. og Archard, S. (2018). Teacher educators’ perceptions of working with digital technologies.. Nordic Journal of Digital Literacy 2018; Volum 13 (3). ISSN 1891-943X.s 177 - 196.s doi: 10.18261/issn.1891-943x-2018-03-04.

Dardanou, M., Unstad, T., Brito, R., Dias, P., Fotakopoulou, O., Sakata, Y. & O' Connor, J. (2020). Use of touchscreen technology by 0–3-year-old children: Parents’ practices and perspectives in Norway, Portugal and Japan. Journal of Early Childhood Literacy,20(3), 551-573,

Fotakopoulou, O., Hatzigianni, M., Dardanou, M., Unstad, T. & O'Connor, J. (2020). A cross-cultural exploration of early childhood educators’ beliefs and experiences around the use of touchscreen technologies with children under 3 years of age. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal, 28(2), 272-285,

Kewalramani, S., Palaiologou, I., Arnott, L., & Dardanou, M. (2020). The integration of the Internet of Toys in early childhood education: A platform for multi-layered interactions. European Early Childhood Education Research Journal. 28 (2), 197-213

Kewalramani, S., Palaiologou, I., & Dardanou, M. (2020). Children’s engineering design thinking processes: The magic of the ROBOTS and the power of BLOCKS (electronics).  Eurasia Journal of Mathematics, Science and Technology Education.

Arnott, L., Kewalramani, S., Gray, C., and Dardanou, M. (2020). Role play and technologies in early childhood in Z. Kingdon (Ed). A Vygotskian Analysis of Children’s Play Behaviours: Beyond the Home Corner, (76-92). London: Routledge.

Kewalramani, S., Arnott, L., & Dardanou, M. (2020). [Editorial] Technology integrated pedagogical practices: A look into Evidence-based teaching and coherent learning for young children. [Special Issue]. European early childhood education research journal.28 (2), 163-166

Dardanou, M. & Kofoed, T. (2019). It is not only about the tools! Professional digital competence, In Gray, C., and Palaiologou, I., (Eds). Early Learning in the Digital Age, London: SAGE


Nettwork DigiCross

  • Aslaug Grov Almås Western Norway University of Applied Sciences
  • Steinar Thorvaldsen UiT The Arctic University of Norway
  • Maria Dardanou UiT the Arctic University of Norway
  • Helge Habbestad UiT the Arctic University of Norway
  • Torstein Unstad UiT the Arctic University of Norway
  • Ahmet Sami Konca Erciyes University/ Faculty of Education, Turkey.
  • Büşra Yüksel Aykanat Erciyes University/ Faculty of Education, Turkey.
  • Rita Brito Escola de Educação e Desenvolvimento Humano, ISEC Lisboa, Portugal.
  • Patrícia Dias CRC-W, Universidade Católica Portuguesa, Portugal
  • Mustafa Odeh Helal Jwaifell Al-Hussein Bin Talal University, Jordan
  • Reham Al-Mohtadi Al-Hussein Bin Talal University, Jordan
  • Al.Mothana M. Gasaymeh Al-Hussein Bin Talal University, Jordan
  • Jane O'Connor Birmingham City University, England
  • Olga Fotakopoulou Birmingham City University, England
  • Shannon Ludgate Birmingham City University, England
  • Harry T. Dyer University of East Anglia, England
  • Sergey Krasin Kharkiv National Pedagogical University, Ukraine
  • Hanna Trukhan Kharkiv National Pedagogical University, Ukraine
  • Oksana Isaeva Department of Organization Psychology, Russia.
  • Elena Volkova Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia
  • Maria Kuragina Herzen State Pedagogical University of Russia
  • Thomas Bjørner Aalborg University Copenhagen, Denmark 
  • Aleksander Janeš University of Primorska, Slovenia
  • Natalia Demeshkant Uniwersytet Pedagogiczny w Krakowie, Poland