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Wednesday, 5th March 2008

Research Paper: The Effect of Structural Cues on User Comprehension, Navigational Behavior, and Perceptions

Research Paper: The Effect of Structural Cues on User Comprehension, Navigational Behavior, and Perceptions
7 pages; PDF.

From the abstract:
Web authors need writing strategies based on empirical studies of real Web users, strategies that will produce comprehensible Web documents that facilitate readers on the Web. The study reported here investigated the effect of structural cues (text previews and navigational tab menus) on user comprehension, navigational behavior, and perceptions. We found that text previews with embedded links to related pages (children nodes) enhance comprehension and discourage site exploration. We also found that lists of links (in lieu of previews) encourage site exploration and are well liked. And, we found that navigational tab menus encourage site exploration and enhance user perceptions. Our findings underscore that good Web design must be context specific—structural cues that promote understanding are not necessarily those that promote exploration or enjoyment.

Source: Proceedings of IEEE International Professional Communication Conference (Seattle, October), 2007.

Note: This paper was also published in Information Design Journal, 15, 3, 242-259, 2007 with the title, "Using Structural Cues to Guide Readers on the Internet. Information."

It was discovered on the Google Research compilation of academic papers.


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