Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Exploring the effect of cognitive load on the propensity for query reformulation behavior
by Na, Kyoungsik, Ph.D., The Florida State University, 2012, 178; 3539828
Abstract (Summary)

With the aim of improving information retrieval system design, this study explored the effect of cognitive load on the propensity to reformulate queries during information seeking on the Web, specifically the effect of manipulating three affective components that contribute to cognitive load—mental demand, temporal demand, and frustration.

A significant difference in the propensity of query reformulation behavior was found between searchers exposed to cognitive load manipulations and searchers who were not exposed. Those exposed to cognitive load manipulations, namely, mental demand, temporal demand, and frustration, made 2.18 times fewer search queries than searchers not exposed. Furthermore, the NASA-TLX cognitive load scores of searchers who were exposed to the three cognitive load manipulations were higher than those of searchers who were not exposed. However, the propensity of query reformulation behavior did not differ across task types. The findings suggest that a dual-task method and NASA-TLX assessment serve as good indicators of cognitive load. Because the findings show that cognitive load hinders a searcher's interaction with information search tools, this study concludes by recommending strategies for reducing cognitive load when designing information systems, or user interfaces.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Burnett, Kathleen
Commitee: Burnett, Gary, Charness, Neil, Stvilia, Besiki
School: The Florida State University
Department: Library and Information Studies
School Location: United States -- Florida
Source: DAI-A 74/02(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Library science, Cognitive psychology, Information science
Keywords: Cognitive load, Cognitive load manipulation, Information retrieval, Mental workload, NASA-TLX, Query reformulation
Publication Number: 3539828
ISBN: 978-1-267-64301-8
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