Behaviour & Information Technology
Special Issue on HCI in MIS, Vol. 23, No. 3, May-June 2004

Guest Editors

Ping Zhang, Syracuse University
Fiona Fui-Hoon Nah, University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Jenny Preece, University of Maryland, Baltimore County



AIS SIGHCI sponsored the "HCI Studies in MIS" mini-track at AMCIS'03 from which the papers in this special edition were selected. This mini-track was the most popular and largest at AMCIS'03. It attracted forty paper submissions of which twenty-seven were accepted for presentation. The final program of AMCIS'03 included ten HCI sessions that ran throughout the entire conference: eight regular paper sessions each featuring three papers, one mentored round table session with three papers by doctoral students, and one HCI panel discussion on the role of HCI in MIS curriculum. The papers covered a variety of HCI topics including Website usability, online consumer behaviour in Web environments, conceptualisation of online shopping experience, cognitive style in decision support environments, Website personalization for relationship management, consumer trust in online shopping, credibility of online information, user frustration in the workplace, social cues and personality in decision making environments, and social and usage process motivation in Internet use.

From the twenty-four accepted regular papers, the authors of the eight best papers were invited to extend and submit their work for consideration in this special issue. Two rounds of rigorous double-blind reviews yielded the three papers in this special issue.

This BIT special issue builds on the following journal special issues that are sponsored by AIS SIGHCI:

  • International Journal of Human-Computer Studies, special issue on "HCI and MIS: Shared Concerns" (Zhang and Dillon 2003) that features the best papers from the HCI mini-track at the AMCIS'02 conference in Dallas, TX, 2002.


  • Journal of the Association for Information Systems, special theme on "HCI Studies in MIS" (edited by Sirkka Jarvenpaa, Izak Benbasat, and Ping Zhang) that features the best papers from the first annual pre-ICIS workshop on HCI Research in MIS that was held in Barcelona, Spain, 2002.

Together, these special issues are part of a long-term outreach effort of AIS SIGHCI to enhance communication among scholars with HCI interests who work in related fields.


Papers in the Special Issue

HCI in MIS, Editoral Introduction

Ping Zhang, Syracuse University
Fiona Fui-Hoon Nah, University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Jenny Preece, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

Human-Computer Interaction (HCI) is gaining momentum in many IT fields as computing technology increasingly impacts individuals, businesses, society, commerce and government throughout the world. More recently, the Association for Information Systems (AIS, recognized the need to promote HCI in the Management Information Systems (MIS) field. The first step taken by AIS was to approve the creation of the Special Interest Group on Human-Computer Interaction (AIS SIGHCI, HCI HOME ). This group was established in 2001 and has run successful tracks and workshops at major MIS conferences since then. A recent conference was the Americas Conference on Information Systems (AMCIS'03) at which the organizers of the HCI mini-track proposed publishing extended versions of the best papers in this special issue.

There are three reasons for producing this special issue. The first is to make BIT readers aware of the work of the AIS SIGHCI members; the second is to tell readers about some of this work; and the third is to encourage future collaboration between AIS SIGHCI and the international HCI community. To achieve these goals and to position the group and its work, we will first briefly describe the historical development and current status of the Management Information Systems discipline and the kind of Human-Computer Interaction research that is being conducted in MIS. We then describe the AMCIS conference from which the papers were selected. Finally, we conclude by calling for better communication and collaboration among HCI scholars in different disciplines.

Size and structure matter to mobile users: an empirical study of the effects of screen size, information structure, and task complexity on user activities with standard Web phones

Minhee Chae and Jinwoo Kim, Human Computer Interaction Lab, Yonsei University, Seoul Korea

The small screens of mobile Internet devices, combined with the increasing complexity of mobile tasks, create a serious obstacle to usability in the mobile Internet. One way to circumvent the obstacle is to organize an information structure with efficient depth/ breadth tradeoffs. A controlled lab experiment was conducted to investigate how screen size and information structure affect user behaviors and perceptions. The moderating effects of task complexity on the relationship between screen size/information structure and user navigation/perceptions were also investigated. Study results indicate that both information structure and screen size significantly affect the navigation behavior and perceptions of mobile Internet users. Task complexity was also found to heighten the influence of information structure on user behavior and perceptions. The paper ends with a discussion of theoretical and practical implications, among them a key implication for mobile Internet businesses: for corporate intranet systems as well as m-commerce transaction systems, the horizontal depth of information structures should be adapted to task complexity and anticipated screen size.

The Impact of Web Page Text-Background Color Combinations on Readability, Retention, Aesthetics, and Behavioral Intention

Richard H. Hall, University of Missouri - Rolla
Patrick Hanna, Matrikon Corporation

The purpose of this experiment was to examine the effect of web page text/background color combination on readability, retention, aesthetics, and behavioral intention. One hundred and thirty-six participants studied two Web pages, one with educational content and one with commercial content, in one of four color-combination conditions. Major findings were: a) Colors with greater contrast ratio generally lead to greater readability; b) Color combination did not significantly affect retention; c) Preferred colors (i.e., blues and chromatic colors) lead to higher ratings of aesthetic quality and intention to purchase; and d) Ratings of aesthetic quality were significantly related to intention to purchase.

A study on tolerable waiting time: how long are Web users willing to wait?

Fiona Fui-Hoon Nah, University of Nebraska, Lincoln

Web users often face a long waiting time for downloading Web pages. Although various technologies and techniques have been implemented to alleviate the situation and to comfort the impatient users, little research has been done to assess what constitutes an acceptable and tolerable waiting time for Web users. This research reviews the literature on computer response time and users' waiting time for download of Web pages, and assesses Web users' tolerable waiting time in information retrieval. It addresses the following questions through an experimental study: What is the effect of feedback on users' tolerable waiting time? How long are users willing to wait for a Web page to be downloaded before abandoning it? The results from this study suggest that the presence of feedback prolongs Web users' tolerable waiting time and the tolerable waiting time for information retrieval is approximately 2 seconds.


The special issue editors are grateful to the reviewers of this special issue. The reviewers are: Susy Chan, Mark Dishaw, Xavier Ferre, Richard Hall, Jinwoo Kim, Barbara Klein, Na Li, Nancy Lightner, Paul Lowry, Thomas Stafford, Diane Strong, Barbara Wildemuth, Vance Wilson, Mun Yi, and Mariam Zahed. We also thank BIT editor-in-chief Tom Stewart for his confidence in us and guidance in preparing this special issue.


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