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Small Technology, Big Data and the business of young people's health

An international investigation of the digitisation of school health and physical education (2015-2017)

School books, an apple and an ipadThe aim of this project is to describe both the nature and consequences of the use of digital technologies in HPE – what form is it taking and with what effects? – and to analyse the forces shaping it. In order to achieve this overall aim, this program of research has four objectives:

  • To complete an international review of the forms that digital HPE is taking;
  • To analyse the commercial, ideological, moral, social and cultural forces that are shaping the digitisation of HPE;
  • To identify the potential benefits and limitations of digital HPE for both teachers and students;
  • To contribute to debates in education policy concerning the use of digital technologies in HPE.

The project will examine how broader social forces are shaping the forms that digital HPE is taking and how digital technology is shaping understandings of the purpose of HPE. The results of this project will stimulate debate, guide educational practice and inform policy about the use of digital technology in school health and physical education (HPE). It will describe the influence of vested interests, analyse the ethical issues raised and make recommendations about the equitable distribution of resources in HPE. Finally, it will contribute to academic knowledge about the impact of technology on both the rhetorical and material role of schools in society.

The project is funded by an Australian Research Council Discovery Project (DP150101904), and administered through Southern Cross University.

Chief Investigators:

Dr Michael Gard, Southern Cross University
Professor Deborah Lupton, University of Canberra
Dr Deana Leahy, Monash University
Dr Carolyn Pluim, Northern Illinois University