Eye Tracking Laboratory

University of Pavia

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B3 - Information Architecture for hierarchical courses

Issue Definition

The Information Architecture (IA) influences users’ navigation and their consequent learning.
IA indeed indicates the correlation among pages, i.e., the overall structure and organization of the e-learning material. In the literature, IA is seen as a five-step process, where the identification of the system requirements and of the user’s profile and task are as important as the definition of the navigation structure, of process mapping and of content design.
Information collection and structuring is a step that occurs, in this process, before a navigational organization can ever be defined. In this respect, three possible content organizations are: linear, hierarchical and network organization.The choice of the organization to adopt strictly depends on the nature of the content.

Guideline Text

1. The Course Plan should reflect course material organisation:
1.a Build the course navigation pattern taking into account that it will affect users’ navigation behaviour and final learning;
1.b Build the course navigation structure taking into account the nature of the content material and of its organization.

2. Nodes should represent real turning points in the learning development:
2.a Whenever course complexity requires it, Introduction Page to new topics and/or Summary Pages addressed to recap topics should be foreseen;
2.b Introduction Page should be placed at nodes or immediately after, in order to present a new topic;
2.c Summary Pages should be placed before nodes in order to recap topics and before a new one is introduced.



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