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Does visual appeal matter? : effects of web survey aesthetics on survey quality

Ist visuelle Gestaltung von Bedeutung? : Auswirkungen der Web-Survey-Ästhetik auf die Umfragequalität
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Mahon-Haft, Taj Alexander; Dillman, Don A.

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Abstract "Due to recent scholarly attention to visual design, much is known about the effects that specific design features have on web surveys, but little attention has been paid to the effects of overall screen design. Applying Norman's (2004) emotional design concepts to web survey design, the authors propose and test hypotheses related to potential detrimental impacts of poor screen aesthetics. To do so, they compare data collected from two versions of the same Student Experience Survey, an experimental design representing poor aesthetics and a control design representing good emotional design. By triggering negative visceral responses and, thus, emotional reactions, the experimental design is predicted to reduce data quality along four avenues: respondent cooperation, substantive response patterns, respondent commitment, and subjective survey experience. Sixteen of 30 total comparisons show reduced data quality on the experimental forms, and all avenues to quality data show some impact. These findings suggest that screen design aesthetics and emotional reactions can impact data quality, independent of survey content. However, the inconsistent results according to some indicators suggest the need for further research on screen design effects to hone our understanding." (author's abstract)
Keywords Internet; website; layout; survey research; quality; design; visual perception; impact; hypothesis testing; data quality; survey; motivation; aesthetics; method; methodology; United States of America; North America
Classification Research Design; Methods and Techniques of Data Collection and Data Analysis, Statistical Methods, Computer Methods; Interactive, electronic Media
Document language English
Publication Year 2010
Page/Pages p. 43-59
Journal Survey Research Methods, 4 (2010) 1
ISSN 1864-3361
Status Published Version; peer reviewed
Licence Deposit Licence - No Redistribution, No Modifications