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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Emotion as elicited by components of an E-Commerce interface Lee, Wilson


This thesis is a result of a study conducted in an effort to understand, in part, the effects of web interface features (image size, visual fidelity, and motion) on emotional related responses such as valence, arousal, attention, and memory. The study was motivated by the relatively low success rates of Electronic Commerce and the work done by Reeves and Nass (1996). One of Reeves and Nass' major claims is that psychological responses (including emotions) are elicited by interactions with media. This study is an attempt to validate their claims and to extend their theory onto web-based media. We have conducted a laboratory experiment with undergraduate students to test an experimental EC website. Students were instructed to search for information on the web, complete attention and memory tasks, and fill out several self-assessment scales on a questionnaire. We have demonstrated from this study that psychological and sociological factors are important in Human Computer Interaction (HCI). Specifically, we have empirically shown that interface features size, visual fidelity, and motion play important roles in influencing users' emotion. We have also demonstrated that the interaction between visual fidelity and motion plays a minor role in influencing users' emotion (in particular, arousal). Furthermore, emotion (in particular, arousal) has been illustrated to be a factor in affecting consumer behavior. Overall, this study confirmed the relevance of Reeves and Nass' studies in the area of Human-Media interaction. As well, it shed new light on the application of their work to the EC context. It also contributes knowledge to the research community with a relatively new paradigm of studying interface and HCI.

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