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Title: Learning and navigating in hypertext: Navigational support by hierarchical menu or tag cloud?
Authors: Walhout, Jaap
Brand-Gruwel, Saskia
Jarodzka, Halszka
Van Dijk, Martin
De Groot, Renate
Kirschner, Paul A.
Keywords: hypertext learning
navigation behavior
gender differences
eye tracking
Issue Date: 2015
Publisher: Computer in Human Behavior
Citation: Walhout, J., Brand-Gruwel, S., Jarodzka, H., Van Dijk, M., De Groot, R., & Kirschner, P. A. (2015). Learning and navigating in hypertext: Navigational support by hierarchical menu or tag cloud? Computer in Human Behavior, 46, 218-227. Doi: 10.1016/j.chb.2015.01.025
Abstract: As hypertext learning environments (HLE) are widely used in education, it is important to study and know the effects and consequences of its use. HLEs are non-linear which means that students have to develop ways of navigating through them. Thus, developing interfaces that facilitate and even guide navigation is important for learning. Research showed that successful learning in HLEs depends on both learner characteristics and HLE features. This study investigated an HLE navigation feature (navigational support with either a tag-cloud or conventional hierarchical menu), task complexity (fact-finding vs. information-gathering task) and a user characteristic (gender). Results show that neither navigational support nor gender is associated with differences in task performance. However, there are differences in information processing. Participants using a tag clouds looked longer at the navigational support and shorter at the overview pages. Combined with fewer revisits of webpages in the tag cloud condition, this indicates a more focused selection of pages. The deeper processing of information needed for the information-gathering task was reflected in fewer visits to, but longer viewing times of pages. As no differences in task performance were found, tag clouds seem to be as effective for performance as more traditional navigation structures for navigational support.
Appears in Collections:1. FEEEL Publications, books and conference papers

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