Adaptive information search: Age-dependent interactions between cognitive profiles and strategies

Jessie Chin, Wai Tat Fu, Thomas Kannampallil

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

51 Scopus citations

Abstract

Previous research has shown that older adults performed worse in web search tasks, and attributed poorer performance to a decline in their cognitive abilities. We conducted a study involving younger and older adults to compare their web search behavior and performance in ill- defined and well-defined information tasks using a health information website. In ill-defined tasks, only a general description about information needs was given, while in well-defined tasks, information needs as well as the specific target information were given. We found that older adults performed worse than younger adults in well-defined tasks, but the reverse was true in ill-defined tasks. Older adults compensated for their lower cognitive abilities by adopting a top-down knowledge-driven strategy to achieve the same level of performance in the ill-defined tasks. Indeed, path models showed that cognitive abilities, health literacy, and knowledge influenced search strategies adopted by older and younger adults. Design implications arc also discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI 2009
Subtitle of host publicationDigital Life New World - Proceedings of the 27th International Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Pages1683-1692
Number of pages10
DOIs
StatePublished - 2009
Event27th International Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2009 - Boston, MA, United States
Duration: Apr 4 2009Apr 9 2009

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings

Conference

Conference27th International Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2009
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityBoston, MA
Period04/4/0904/9/09

Keywords

  • Age differences
  • And health literacy
  • Cognitive abilities
  • Cost-benefit analysis
  • Ill-defined task
  • Search strategies
  • Web search

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