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Enhancing Web Usability : Exploiting interactional properties of web interfaces with vocabulary and comprehension learning in non-native English speakers


Muhammad Adrees, Nadeem Ahmad, Alessia Amelio, Khawaja Ali Qadeer


Vol. 18  No. 10  pp. 164-172


The objectives of this study are to reduce the gulf between contextual meanings of words, split attention, cognitive load and improve the performance with immediate access to required information to users. An English article consisting of 810 words with 16 highlighted keywords (presumably difficult words) is presented to non-native English speakers to evaluate the usability of four differently designed interfaces in perspective of vocabulary and comprehension learning. The highlighted words in experimental interfaces have embodied with a pair of synonyms, a pair of antonyms and mix pair (synonym and an antonym) to achieve the study objectives. 160 subjects are randomly divided into four different groups to complete both tasks (vocabulary acquisition and comprehension learning) by using the proposed interfaces. Statistically, one of our experiments has improved more than 25 percent in vocabulary acquisition in 40 percent less time as compared to control group. Statistical analysis of the System Usability Scale indicates that users average subjective usability score boosted from 56 to 70 using experimental interfaces. In our experiments, users of our proposed interfaces acquire significantly more information than users make in the control group. The results indicate that our techniques deliver better performance by enhancing user's vocabulary acquisition (low-level processing) in less time.


User interfaces, Human-computer interaction, Usability, Partial attention, Cognitive load, Interaction techniques.