The Impact of Entity Cards on Learning-Oriented Search Tasks

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Abstract

Entity cards are a common occurrence in today's web Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs). SERPs provide information on a complex information object in a structured manner. Typically, they combine data from several search verticals. They have been shown to: (i) increase users' engagement with the SERP; and (ii) improve decision making for certain types of searches (such as health searches). In this paper, we investigate whether the benefits of showing entity cards also extend to the Search as Learning (SAL) domain. Do learners learn more when entity cards are present on the SERP? To answer this question, we designed a series of learning-oriented search tasks (with a minimum search time of 15 minutes), and conducted a crowdsourced Interactive Information Retrieval (IIR) user study (N=144) with four interface conditions: (i) a control with no entity cards; (ii) displaying relevant entity cards; (iii) displaying somewhat relevant entity cards; and (iv) displaying non-relevant entity cards. Our results show that (i) entity cards do not have an effect on participants' learning, but (ii) they do significantly impact participants' search behaviours across a range of dimensions (such as the dwell time and search session duration).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationICTIR 2021 - Proceedings of the 2021 ACM SIGIR International Conference on Theory of Information Retrieval
Pages63-72
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-4503-8611-1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2021
EventICTIR 2021: Proceedings of the 2021 ACM SIGIR International Conference on Theory of Information Retrieval - Virtual Event
Duration: 11 Jul 202111 Jul 2021

Publication series

NameICTIR 2021 - Proceedings of the 2021 ACM SIGIR International Conference on Theory of Information Retrieval

Conference

ConferenceICTIR 2021: Proceedings of the 2021 ACM SIGIR International Conference on Theory of Information Retrieval
Abbreviated titleICTIR '21
Period11/07/2111/07/21

Keywords

  • entity cards
  • information cards
  • search as learning
  • user study

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