Establishing evaluation criteria for e-dictionaries

Liezl H. Ball (Department of Information Science, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa)
Theo J.D. Bothma (Department of Information Science, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa)

Library Hi Tech

ISSN: 0737-8831

Publication date: 19 March 2018



The purpose of this paper is to identify criteria according to which e-dictionaries can be evaluated. Information technology can be used to enhance e-dictionaries, but if not done carefully, information tools that completely overwhelm a user with irrelevant information can be developed. Criteria are necessary according to which e-dictionaries can be developed and evaluated to ensure tools that only provide relevant information on demand.


A literature review was conducted to identify trends in lexicography and modern information technology. Previous usability studies were considered to identify key usability issues. The information was synthesised to identify a set of criteria.


It was found the e-dictionaries should be evaluated according to their content, information architecture, navigation, access (searching and browsing), help, customisation and use of other innovative technologies.


A comprehensive set of criteria has been identified that can be used to evaluate e-dictionaries and to guide lexicographers in the development of e-dictionaries.



Ball, L. and Bothma, T. (2018), "Establishing evaluation criteria for e-dictionaries", Library Hi Tech, Vol. 36 No. 1, pp. 152-166.

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