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Is visual content in textual search interfaces beneficial to dyslexic users?

Berget, Gerd; Mulvey, Fiona LU and Sandnes, Frode Eika (2016) In International Journal of Human Computer Studies 92-93. p.17-29
Abstract

Dyslexia is a learning disability characterised by problems with accurate or fluent word recognition, poor decoding, and poor spelling abilities. Although several studies have addressed dyslexia and Web accessibility, less is known about how dyslexia affects information search. This study investigated whether the inclusion of icons in search user interfaces enhances performance among dyslexics. A total of 21 dyslexics and 21 controls completed 52 search tasks in 4 conditions: icons only, words only, and both icons and words in a grid layout and a list layout, while eye movements were recorded. Dyslexics took significantly longer than controls to locate targets in tasks containing text, but not in the icon-only condition. Dyslexics had... (More)

Dyslexia is a learning disability characterised by problems with accurate or fluent word recognition, poor decoding, and poor spelling abilities. Although several studies have addressed dyslexia and Web accessibility, less is known about how dyslexia affects information search. This study investigated whether the inclusion of icons in search user interfaces enhances performance among dyslexics. A total of 21 dyslexics and 21 controls completed 52 search tasks in 4 conditions: icons only, words only, and both icons and words in a grid layout and a list layout, while eye movements were recorded. Dyslexics took significantly longer than controls to locate targets in tasks containing text, but not in the icon-only condition. Dyslexics had longer fixation durations than controls in both icon and text based search arrays, suggesting higher mental load associated with search tasks generally. The addition of words to icon arrays led to faster search times within controls, but not dyslexics. Dyslexics also exhibited more fixations on dual-modality tasks, and longer scanpaths than controls in list layout. Both groups were fastest searching the list layout, with icons and words listed in columns. Results are discussed in terms of the design of accessible search interfaces for dyslexic users, taking into account mental load of dual-modality information display, and the arrangement of search items. Empirical data is provided for the design of accessible search results interfaces for dyslexics.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Dyslexia, Eye-tracking, Information search behavior, Search user interfaces, Universal design, Visual search
in
International Journal of Human Computer Studies
volume
92-93
pages
13 pages
publisher
Elsevier
external identifiers
  • scopus:84968817472
  • wos:000379367900002
ISSN
1071-5819
DOI
10.1016/j.ijhcs.2016.04.006
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
1eb06f77-4c0f-4fe1-b47c-46af35a09983
date added to LUP
2016-12-15 14:32:57
date last changed
2017-09-18 11:31:31
@article{1eb06f77-4c0f-4fe1-b47c-46af35a09983,
  abstract     = {<p>Dyslexia is a learning disability characterised by problems with accurate or fluent word recognition, poor decoding, and poor spelling abilities. Although several studies have addressed dyslexia and Web accessibility, less is known about how dyslexia affects information search. This study investigated whether the inclusion of icons in search user interfaces enhances performance among dyslexics. A total of 21 dyslexics and 21 controls completed 52 search tasks in 4 conditions: icons only, words only, and both icons and words in a grid layout and a list layout, while eye movements were recorded. Dyslexics took significantly longer than controls to locate targets in tasks containing text, but not in the icon-only condition. Dyslexics had longer fixation durations than controls in both icon and text based search arrays, suggesting higher mental load associated with search tasks generally. The addition of words to icon arrays led to faster search times within controls, but not dyslexics. Dyslexics also exhibited more fixations on dual-modality tasks, and longer scanpaths than controls in list layout. Both groups were fastest searching the list layout, with icons and words listed in columns. Results are discussed in terms of the design of accessible search interfaces for dyslexic users, taking into account mental load of dual-modality information display, and the arrangement of search items. Empirical data is provided for the design of accessible search results interfaces for dyslexics.</p>},
  author       = {Berget, Gerd and Mulvey, Fiona and Sandnes, Frode Eika},
  issn         = {1071-5819},
  keyword      = {Dyslexia,Eye-tracking,Information search behavior,Search user interfaces,Universal design,Visual search},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {08},
  pages        = {17--29},
  publisher    = {Elsevier},
  series       = {International Journal of Human Computer Studies},
  title        = {Is visual content in textual search interfaces beneficial to dyslexic users?},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.ijhcs.2016.04.006},
  volume       = {92-93},
  year         = {2016},
}