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    Open-Card Sort to Explain Why Low-Literate Usersabandon their Web Searches Early

    People and Computers XXIV Games are a Serious Business

    Proceedings of HCI 2010
    The 24th British HCI Group Annual Conference
    University of Abertay, Dundee, UK

    6 - 10 September 2010


    Neesha Kodagoda, William Wong and Nawaz Khan


    The purpose of this paper is to report the possible reasons for premature abandonment by lowliterate users during online searches. Previous evidence suggests that low-literate web users abandon their online searches early believing that the information they were looking for should be in the section they were at, thinking that they have either found it or that the information was unavailable. This paper describes an open-card sorting technique combined with multiple Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) methods to understand why this occurs. Nine high-literate and eight low-literate volunteers of the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) sorted 37 cards representing information in the “Adviceguide” social services website. The qualitative data collected were analysed using Emergent Themes Analysis (ETA). Results showed that low-literate users do not create main and subgroups when classifying the cards but kept them on single-level taxonomy. They rank these groups based on flawed interpretations of concepts and personal or hypothetical experiences. High-literate users create multi-level taxonomies and their interpretations are based on keywords and interpretations of concepts and personal or hypothetical experiences. We believe these differences in classification models may contribute to premature abandonment of online searches by low-literate users.


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