Personalizing information retrieval for multi-session tasks: Examining the roles of task stage, task type, and topic knowledge on the interpretation of dwell time as an indicator of document usefulness

Jingjing Liu, Nicholas J. Belkin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations

Abstract

Personalization of information retrieval tailors search towards individual users to meet their particular information needs by taking into account information about users and their contexts, often through implicit sources of evidence such as user behaviors. This study looks at users' dwelling behavior on documents and several contextual factors: the stage of users' work tasks, task type, and users' knowledge of task topics, to explore whether or not taking account contextual factors could help infer document usefulness from dwell time. A controlled laboratory experiment was conducted with 24 participants, each coming 3 times to work on 3 subtasks in a general work task. The results show that task stage could help interpret certain types of dwell time as reliable indicators of document usefulness in certain task types, as was topic knowledge, and the latter played a more significant role when both were available. This study contributes to a better understanding of how dwell time can be used as implicit evidence of document usefulness, as well as how contextual factors can help interpret dwell time as an indicator of usefulness. These findings have both theoretical and practical implications for using behaviors and contextual factors in the development of personalization systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)58-81
Number of pages24
JournalJournal of the Association for Information Science and Technology
Volume66
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2015

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Information Systems and Management
  • Library and Information Sciences

Keywords

  • end user searching
  • information retrieval
  • information seeking

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