Designing Teenage Emotions with a Life of Their Own

Winterburn, Neil James, Gregory, Peggy orcid iconORCID: 0000-0001-7891-6666 and Fitton, Daniel Bowen orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-2300-5432 (2016) Designing Teenage Emotions with a Life of Their Own. In: Perspectives on HCI Research with Teenagers. Human–Computer Interaction Series book . Springer, Switzerland, pp. 207-236. ISBN 978-3-319-33448-6

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In this chapter, two participatory design activities are described in which teenagers create lo-fi designs describing emotions and explain the rationale for their design choices. Designs annotating and describing emotions are categorised as anthropomorphic, abstract, object based, or biomorphic. The chapter concludes: (i) teenagers use a variety of visual metaphors to describe emotions, (ii) teenagers use anthropomorphic visual metaphors most often to describe emotions and (iii) teenagers make more use of abstract and biomorphic visual metaphors to describe ‘negative’ emotions. The effect of materials on designs is analysed, suggesting that teenagers are more likely to create designs describing emotions featuring anthropomorphic visual metaphors when using malleable three-dimensional materials. Suggestions are made for the use of externalisation and personification as part of interactive emotion displays within affective systems. A focus group evaluation of a prototype mobile app is described, which suggests that teenagers place more importance on an affective systems ability to support social relationships than they do its ability to support psychological development. This research will be of value to interaction designers and Child-Computer Interaction researchers seeking to understand how teenagers use different visual metaphors to describe different emotions.

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