Negotiating complexity: A bioecological systems perspective on literacy development

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

6 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background/Aims: Urie Bronfenbrenner's bioecological systems model is well regarded in the field of child development. Although this model is not commonly used by literacy researchers, I argue that Bronfenbrenner's emphasis on the roles of personal characteristics, proximal processes, contextual systems, and historical time has explanatory power in the area of literacy. Methods: I review this body of literature and describe a visual representation that clarifies the relevant aspects of the theory. Results: Adoption of Bronfenbrenner's model increases the likelihood that literacy development will be understood as occurring at the site of transaction between cognitive processes and social practices. Literacy researchers who have applied this theory differ in the degree to which they have attended to Bronfenbrenner's guidance relative to adequate research practice and, as such, findings from this research range from less to more theoretically sound and useful. Conclusion: As contemporary literacy researchers consider employing Bronfenbrenner's theory to frame their work, it is necessary for them to account for all aspects of his rich and complex model.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-187
Number of pages25
JournalHuman Development
Volume59
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017

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Negotiating
Research Personnel
Child Development
Research
Literacy

Keywords

  • Bioecological systems theory
  • Development
  • Literacy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

Cite this

Negotiating complexity : A bioecological systems perspective on literacy development. / Jaeger, Elizabeth L.

In: Human Development, Vol. 59, No. 4, 01.01.2017, p. 163-187.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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