THE EYES HAVE IT: USING EYE TRACKING TECHNOLOGY TO ASSESS THE USABILITY OF LEARNING MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS IN ELEMENTARY SCHOOLS

Christopher Jankovski, Damian Schofield

Abstract


Twenty-six students from a sixth grade math class in Upstate New York received guardian approval to participate in a study that gathered data pertaining to student navigation ability, information retrieval ability, and satisfaction in regards to the Learning Management System (LMS) their school utilized. Data collection began with the researchers attending math classes for observation and to conduct cognitive walkthroughs with the students to gather information about their experiences and navigation through the LMS. An eye tracker and the associated eye tracking software were utilized to monitor and detect patterns of eye movements when the students were looking at a device screen. For this study, students were monitored by the eye tracker while they attempted to complete several tasks from the experiment. By measuring the length of time taken by students as they completed tasks on the LMS, quantitative data can be collected and used later in the experiment. After analyzing the time metrics and the eye tracking data produced and feedback given on the questionnaire distributed at the beginning of the experiment, a targeted LMS page was slightly modified in hopes to increase the effectiveness of the page, based on user interface design standards.  Well defined organization, accessibility, and usability in an LMS is essential to allow learners to focus to be on their curriculums, and not how to access their assignments. An in-depth analysis of navigation through an LMS will allow for a better understanding of how users interact with the structure of their curriculum in an electronic format. The study described in this paper intended to address the question of whether an LMS used in an elementary school setting can provide users with an interface that optimizes the accessibility and usability of their class materials.

 

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Keywords


learning management systems, eye tracking, usability, human computer interaction, education

References


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