Nguyen, M. H., Van Weert, J. C. M., Bol, N., Loos, E. F., Tytgat, K. M. A. J., Van de Ven, A. W. H., & Smets, E. M A. (2017). Tailoring the mode of information presentation: Effects on younger and older adults’ attention and recall of online information. Human Communication Research, 43(1), 102-126. doi:10.1111/hcre.12097

Abstract:Previous studies have mainly focused on tailoring message content to match individual characteristics and preferences. Additional strategies, such as tailoring to individual preferences for the mode of information presentation, are proposed to increase message effectiveness. This study investigates the effect of a mode-tailored website compared to four non-tailored websites on younger and older adults’ attention and recall of information, employing a 5 (condition: tailored vs. text, text with illustrations, audiovisual, combination) × 2 (age: younger [25 – 45] vs. older [≥ 65] adults) design (N = 559). The mode-tailored condition (relative to non-tailored conditions) improved attention to the website and, consequently, recall in older adults, but not in younger adults. Younger adults recalled more from non-tailored information such as text only or text with illustrations, relative to tailored information.

Keywords: mode of presentation, tailoring, older adults, aging, attention, processing, memory, information recall, multimodal information, modality.

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