Leicester Law School team win 2015 SLS Best Poster Price

Dawn Watkins, Elee Kirk, Effie Law and Jo Barwick have been awarded Best Poster prize at the Society of Legal Scholars Annual Conference.

The poster sets out some of the early findings from their research, which involved using a specially-designed digital game on a tablet, to gain insights into children’s understandings of the law in their everyday lives.

The project, ‘Law in Children’s Lives’, is led by Dr Dawn Watkins in the University of Leicester’s School of Law and has been funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC).  Other members of the research team are Dr Jo Barwick, Dr Elee Kirk and Dr Effie Law (Computer Sciences).

The game was designed with the help of children from three Leicestershire primary schools.  The research team visited a further eight Leicestershire primary schools where children aged 8–10 were provided with tablets, complete with headsets and microphones to record their views.  They worked with 634 children in total.

The game, ‘Adventures with Lex’, involves a cartoon alien called Lex coming to Earth and asking the children to show him their lives. It takes place in four familiar worlds – a school, a park, a shop, and a friend’s house.

The children are shown several scenarios, including a woman hitting her child in public, a friend being left home alone, and a dilapidated playground. They are then asked questions such as ‘who is responsible for this?’ or ‘what can you do about this?’

The alien, Lex, then asks the children to explain out loud their reasoning behind their choices.

The full project findings will be published in May 2016.

For more information contact Dr Dawn Watkins dawn.watkins@le.ac.uk

For further information please see the project website, Law in Children's Lives.

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