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Information Seeking Stopping Behavior in Online Scenarios

The Impact of Task, Technology and Individual Characteristics


Erik Hemmer

The growing amount of information provided via web-based information technologies forces the users of these technologies to stop seeking for information before having acquired all available information. This stopping decision is either made actively following clear guidelines or subconsciously based on the seeker’s intuition. This book analyzes the aforementioned duality by developing and testing a multi-theoretical research model dealing with information seeking stopping behavior in online scenarios. Thus, by delivering insights into the mechanisms that influence information seeking activities, this study does not only advance theory building in the Information Systems discipline and adjacent fields but is also highly relevant for practitioners and developers of information technology.


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4. Pre-Test and Theory Refinement


4. Pre-Test and Theory Refinem ent In Chapter 3, this study’s research design has been described and a laboratory experiment has been chosen as a suitable means for evaluating the research model proposed in Section 2.4.1. In this chapter, a pre-test of the laboratory experi­ ment environment and the experimental tasks is conducted. The objective of this pre-test is threefold: it aims at (1) evaluating and adapting the laboratory ex­ periment software, (2) evaluating and adapting the tasks that are shown during the experiment and (3) making sure that the research model captures all relevant aspects of the real world it reflects. To accomplish these goals, the pre-test is designed in a way that is very close to the main study which is conducted later to validate the research model. In the experiments of the pre-test phase, 11 subjects solved a series of six in­ formation seeking tasks in the laboratory experiment environment. Additionally, heart rate variability data were captured and the subjects were interviewed after the experiment. The results are discussed subsequently and changes being made to the experiment software are described. Furthermore, it is explained how the triangulation of data collected via different quantitative and qualitative methods informed the refinement of the study’s research model. 4.1. E xperim ental D esign The experimental design basically consists of three phases (Figure 4.1). In the initial phase, the subjects are welcomed and asked to fill in some questionnaires concerning demographic aspects. Furthermore, the subjects read an experiment description with varying...

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