‘It Brings it all Back, all those Good Times; it Makes Me Go Close to Tears’. Creating Digital Personalised Stories with People who have Dementia

Critten, Valerie and Kucirkova, Natalia (2019). ‘It Brings it all Back, all those Good Times; it Makes Me Go Close to Tears’. Creating Digital Personalised Stories with People who have Dementia. Dementia, 18(3) pp. 864–881.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1471301217691162

Abstract

The purpose of these three case studies was to analyse and theoretically explain the contribution of digital multimedia personalisation to stimulate and share long-term memories of people who live with mild to moderate dementia. We investigated how the use of a freely available iPad app can, in a supporting context, facilitate the creation of personalised multimedia stories, including the participants’ audio recordings, texts and photos of items, places or people important to them. Three people who were recruited from a club for people living with dementia created personalised multimedia stories using their own photographs and/or pictures downloaded from the internet, with written captions and audio-recorded voiceovers. Our analysis focuses on the themes and symbols across the three final stories of the participants and the process of creating stories with the Our Story iPad app. The discussion concerns the theoretical value of multimedia and the practical value of story-making apps for people with dementia. We conclude that the multimedia features available with the Our Story app offer a unique opportunity for people living with dementia to store, access and generate memories, capture them in writing and audio; and the ability to continue adding to the original stories.

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