Designing to Change Users' Information Seeking Behaviour
Hanna Stelmaszewska (Middlesex University, UK), Ann Blandford (University College London, UK) and George Buchanan (University of Waikato, New Zealand)
Copyright: © 2005
Hypermedia systems allow information to be created, stored, accessed, and manipulated in a variety of ways. One example of such a system is a digital library (DL). DLs are typically difficult to learn and to use. One aspect of learnability is that novice users should be able to learn how to search effectively; one approach to this is having the system provide context-relevant help. We report on two studies: the first identifies novices’ difficulties, which informed design changes to integrate adaptive help into a DL system; the second illustrates how interface design can influence users’ information seeking behaviour. It focuses on strategies developed and applied by users in response to two types of ‘tips’. This study provides an indication of how the interface can improve inexperienced users’ interactions with DLs and help them develop more sophisticated information seeking strategies, while also creating more adaptive DLs.