A 2-year study is being conducted to understand how technology constructs learning through online videoconferencing for parents caring for a child 0-12 months during the COVID-19 pandemic. We will use a socio-material theoretical perspective and ethnographic methods informed by feminist poststructuralism. Our objective is to conduct a digital ethnography of a new parent education chat space, where human and non-human elements combine to accomplish teaching and learning.
The research questions are:
1) How do parents, health care providers, tools, and spaces come together and experience learning in video conferenced environments? and, 2) How are these practices personally constructed within wider processes and social and institutional discourses of new parenthood?
We will facilitate and record 10 video conferenced postpartum support sessions with 10 parent participants in each session. The analysis will involve ethnographic socio-material observations and 20 individual semi-structured interviews (2 parent participants from each session). Results from our study will be used to create strategies and resources designed to enhance support and learning through virtual, socio-material connections that can inform connections for all parents, not only during times of pandemic-related isolation but also afterwards.