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Arts-based data collection techniques used in child research


  • Martha Driessnack,

    Corresponding author
    1. Martha Driessnack, PhD, PNP-BC, RN, is an Assistant Professor, The University of Iowa, College of Nursing, Iowa City, Iowa, USA; and
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  • Ryoko Furukawa

    1. Ryoko Furukawa, PhD, RN, is a Lecturer, Kyoto University, School of Human Health Science, Kyoto, Japan
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  • Disclosure: The authors report no actual or potential conflicts of interest.

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Purpose.  The purpose of this study was to identify the different arts-based techniques being used in health-related research with children.

Design and Methods.  A systematic survey of literature was conducted.

Results.  Two hundred and ten articles were initially identified and reviewed. Of these, 116 met inclusion criteria of arts-based techniques in research with children 7–12 years of age. The different categories of techniques identified included (a) drawings, (b) photographs, (c) graphics, and (d) artifacts. Only 19% of the studies were health related. Further, 79% were conducted outside the United States, revealing that arts-based techniques appear to be underused by nurses and other healthcare researchers, especially in the United States.

Practice Implications.  To ensure that children actively engage in research involving them, nurses can familiarize themselves with and advocate for the use of arts-based techniques.

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