Talking to toddlers: Drawing on mothers' perceptions of using wearable and mobile technology in the home

Dawn Choo*, Shani Dettman, Richard Dowell, Robert Cowan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contributionpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
56 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Mother-child interactions often give rise to opportunities for early language learning in the context of everyday life. Persuasive technology has the potential to influence maternal language behaviours in the home and promote mothers' active engagement in the development of their children's communication skills. Aim: This paper explored maternal perceptions regarding the use of a language tracking wearable (Language Environment Analysis; LENA) device and a parent education smartphone application in an 8-week trial with their young children. Methods: Mother/child dyads were enrolled in a feasibility trial designed to obtain objective auditory and linguistic data from each child's naturalistic settings (Control Condition), provide feedback to mothers about their child's home language environment (LENA Feedback Condition), and to explore effectiveness of an app designed to promote meaningful parent/child interactions during daily routines (LENA Feedback and App Condition). Results and Discussion: The majority of mothers (80%) who participated in the trial reported a preference for using the mobile app and/or LENA technology again. Maternal responses during this pilot informed the design of an ongoing, prospective language intervention study for parents and their young children with significant hearing loss.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIntegrating and connecting care
Subtitle of host publicationselected papers from the 25th Australian National Health InformatIcs Conference (HIC 2017)
EditorsAngela Ryan, Louise K. Schaper, Sue Whetton
Place of PublicationAmsterdam, Netherlands
PublisherIOS Press
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9781614997832
ISBN (Print)9781614997825
Publication statusPublished - 2017
Externally publishedYes
Event25th Australian National Health Informatics Conference, HIC 2017 - Brisbane, Australia
Duration: 6 Aug 20179 Aug 2017

Publication series

NameStudies in Health Technology and Informatics
ISSN (Print)0926-9630
ISSN (Electronic)1879-8365


Conference25th Australian National Health Informatics Conference, HIC 2017

Bibliographical note

Copyright the Author(s) 2017. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


  • child language environment
  • maternal language behaviour
  • smartphone app
  • user experience
  • wearable technology


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