Age, technology usage, and cognitive characteristics in relation to perceived disorientation and reported website ease of use.
Hanson, Vicki L.
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CRABB, M. and HANSON, V.L. 2014. Age, technology usage, and cognitive characteristics in relation to perceived disorientation and reported website ease of use. In the Proceedings of the 16th international ACM SIGACCESS conference on computers and accessibility (ASSETS '14), 20 - 22 October 2014, Rochester, USA. New York: ACM [online], pages 193-200. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1145/2661334.2661356
Comparative studies including older and younger adults are becoming more common in HCI, generally used to compare how these two different age groups will approach a task. However, it is unclear whether user "age" is the underlying factor that differentiates between these two groups. To address this problem, an examination into the relationship between users' age, previous technology experience, and cognitive characteristics is conducted. Measures of perceived disorientation and reported ease of use are used to understand links that exist between these user characteristics and their effect on browsing experience. This is achieved through a lab-based information retrieval task, where participants visited a selection of websites in order to find answers to a series of questions and then self reported their feelings of perceived disorientation and website ease of use through a Likert-scored questionnaire. The presented research found that age accounts for as little as 1% of user browsing experience when performing information retrieval tasks. Further, it showed that cognitive ability and previous technology experience significantly affected perceived disorientation in these searches. These results argue for the inclusion of metrics regarding cognitive ability and previous technology experience when analyzing user satisfaction and performance in Internet based-studies.