Scandinavian Working Papers in Economics
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Department of informatics, Copenhagen Business School Working Paper Series, Department of informatics, Copenhagen Business School

No 2004-20:
The disruptive effect of Think Aloud

Janni Nielsen and Carsten Yssing

Abstract: Thinking Aloud Thinking Aloud is the most commonly used technique used to test usersī interaction with computers. The assumption is that Think Aloud gives access to what goes on in the usersī minds. However, interfaces are multi modal and play heavily on userīs visual perception. Reflecting upon Think Aloud (TA), we ask the question: what happens when users are required to verbalise their visual perceptions and interactions? We argue that TA may have a disruptive effect, suggesting that other techniques be considered. With a theoretical distinction between focal and subsidiary awareness and a focus on the sense making process, we develop a frame for test of userīs visual interaction which rely on the coordination between hand/mouse and eye/cursor.

Keywords: Think Aloud; visual perception; interaction; test; (follow links to similar papers)

JEL-Codes: O30; (follow links to similar papers)

5 pages, September 19, 2004

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