Experiences with everyday technology and wellbeing in dementia
Sweeney, Laura Jane
Thesis or dissertation
- © 2019 Laura Jane Sweeney. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of the copyright holder.
This portfolio thesis consists of three parts: a systematic literature review, an empirical paper and a set of appendices. The thesis as a whole explores the use of everyday technologies in dementia and how everyday technology is experienced by individuals living with dementia and their care partners.
Part one is a systematic literature review that explores how people living with dementia and their care partners experience and view using technologies to enhance wellbeing through social engagement, participation and leisure. The review additionally aimed to understand what views and experiences people with dementia and their care partners have in relation to the usability of everyday technology. Ten papers were reviewed, and the data were synthesised from a narrative approach. The findings indicate that everyday technology has the potential to have a positive impact of different areas of wellbeing for people living with dementia. The overall findings are discussed within the context of wider literature, with consideration of areas for further research and clinical implications.
Part two of the portfolio is an empirical study that aimed to understand how couples, where one person is living with dementia, experience co-creating a digital life story book together. The study aimed to understand whether co-creating a digital life book supports couples’ wellbeing and, if so, how does it support their wellbeing. Four married couples (n=8) completed the 6 week study of creating their digital life story book and participated in an interview following the 6 weeks. The research used a qualitative method, gathering data using a Constructivist Grounded Theory approach. Because full data saturation was not met, the final data were analysed using Thematic Analysis. Four superordinate and eight subordinate themes emerged from the data. The findings are discussed around the wider context of literature exploring life story work and couples’ wellbeing in dementia, with the implications for clinical practice and further research discussed.
Part three consists of a set of appendices relating to both the systematic literature review and the empirical paper. Included in these appendices are a reflective statement and an epistemological statement which explores the researcher’s journey throughout the research process, and the philosophical position including the underlying assumptions of the research.
- Department of Psychological Health, Wellbeing and Social Work, The University of Hull
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