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Effects of interaction design in digital libraries on user interactions

Xiangmin Zhang (School of Communication, Information and Library Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA)
Yuelin Li (School of Communication, Information and Library Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA)
Jingjing Liu (School of Communication, Information and Library Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA)
Ying Zhang (School of Communication, Information and Library Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, New Jersey, USA)

Journal of Documentation

ISSN: 0022-0418

Article publication date: 25 April 2008

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to investigate the effects of different search and browse features in digital libraries (DLs) on task interactions, and what features would lead to poor user experience.

Design/methodology/approach

Three operational DLs: ACM, IEEE CS, and IEEE Xplore are used in this study. These three DLs present different features in their search and browsing designs. Two information‐seeking tasks are constructed: one search task and one browsing task. An experiment was conducted in a usability laboratory. Data from 35 participants are collected on a set of measures for user interactions.

Findings

The results demonstrate significant differences in many aspects of the user interactions between the three DLs. For both search and browse designs, the features that lead to poor user interactions are identified.

Research limitations/implications

User interactions are affected by specific design features in DLs. Some of the design features may lead to poor user performance and should be improved. The study was limited mainly in the variety and the number of tasks used.

Originality/value

The study provided empirical evidence to the effects of interaction design features in DLs on user interactions and performance. The results contribute to our knowledge about DL designs in general and about the three operational DLs in particular.

Keywords

Citation

Zhang, X., Li, Y., Liu, J. and Zhang, Y. (2008), "Effects of interaction design in digital libraries on user interactions", Journal of Documentation, Vol. 64 No. 3, pp. 438-463. https://doi.org/10.1108/00220410810867623

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited