Distribution of Cognitive Load in Web Search

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Distribution of Cognitive Load in Web Search
The search task and the system both affect the demand on cognitive resources during information search. In some situations, the demands may become too high for a person. This article has a three-fold goal. First, it presents and critiques methods to measure cognitive load. Second, it explores the distribution of load across search task stages. Finally, it seeks to improve our understanding of factors affecting cognitive load levels in information search. To this end, a controlled Web search experiment with forty-eight participants was conducted. Interaction logs were used to segment search tasks semi-automatically into task stages. Cognitive load was assessed using a new variant of the dual-task method. Average cognitive load was found to vary by search task stages. It was significantly higher during query formulation and user description of a relevant document as compared to examining search results and viewing individual documents. Semantic information shown next to the search resul...
Jacek Gwizdka
Added 24 Jan 2011
Updated 24 Jan 2011
Type Journal
Year 2010
Where CORR
Authors Jacek Gwizdka
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