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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1959.3/238317
- Typing over autocomplete: cognitive load in website use by older adults
- Doube, Wendy; Beh, Jeanie
- This paper describes an exploration into factors influencing the interaction of cognitive processing with visual and motor skills during website use by older adults. Twenty-eight older adults and 18 younger adults completed an on-line air-ticketing search task. Quantitative and qualitative data was captured from multiple sources, and analysed from the perspective of cognitive load. Compared with the younger control group, older adults took significantly longer and made significantly more errors in reporting the results of the task. Although the mean duration of gaze down at the keyboard and notes was similar for both age groups, the mean duration of screen gaze was significantly longer for older than for younger participants. Older adults also logged a significantly higher number of gazes from keyboard to screen. Their longer task times were associated with actions that increase cognitive load by decreasing spatial and temporal contiguity of information. Unlike their younger counterparts, they did not glance rapidly between screen and keyboard, but focussed their gaze on the keyboard, checking their typing only when they had completed a form field. Accordingly, they typed into autocomplete combo boxes, ignoring preset options, with the unexpected consequence of more expensive fares and a smaller range of results. When participant background information was analysed, task time was correlated with less Internet experience as well as with age. Supported by observation and self-report which did not signal pronounced vision or motor problems, these results suggest that task times could be reduced through automation of repeatable user interface actions with practice, especially with training in screen glancing rather than gazing. Although the number of search reporting errors was correlated with age group and not experience, greater proficiency with the interface could possibly free cognitive resources for improved problem-solving.
- Publication type
- Conference paper
- Research centre
- Swinburne University of Technology
- Proceedings of 'Integration, Interaction, Innovation, Immersion, Inclusion', the Annual Conference of the Australian Computer-Human Interaction Special Interest Group (OZCHI 2012), Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 26-30 November 2012, pp. 97-106
- Publication year
- Ageing; Autocomplete; Cognitive load; Graphical user interfaces; Interaction styles; Older adults; Software testing; Typing; Usability; Website use; Websites
- 9781450314381, 1450314384
- Publisher URL
- Copyright © 2012 ACM.
- Peer reviewed