Title: Effect of font size, italics, and colour count on web usability

Authors: Sanjiv K. Bhatia, Ashok Samal, Nithin Rajan, Marc T. Kiviniemi

Addresses: Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, University of Missouri – St. Louis, St. Louis, MO 63121, USA. ' Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University of Nebraska – Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68588, USA. ' Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University of Nebraska – Lincoln, Lincoln, NE 68588, USA. ' Department of Community Health and Health Behavior, University at Buffalo, Buffalo, NY 14214, USA

Abstract: Web usability measures the ease of use of a website. This study attempts to find the effect of three factors – font size, italics, and colour count – on web usability. The study was performed using a set of tasks and developing a survey questionnaire. We performed the study using a set of human subjects, selected from the undergraduate students taking courses in psychology. The data computed from the tasks and survey questionnaire were statistically analysed to find if there was any effect of font size, italics, and colour count on the three web usability dimensions. We found that for the student population considered, there was no significant effect of font size on usability. However, the manipulation of italics and colour count did influence some aspects of usability. The subjects performed better for pages with no italics and high italics compared to moderate italics. The subjects rated the pages that contained only one colour higher than the web pages with four or six colours. This research will help web developers better understand the effect of font size, italics, and colour count on web usability in general, and for young adults, in particular.

Keywords: web usability; web factors; user interfaces; font selection; colour selection; font size; italics; colour count; young adults.

DOI: 10.1504/IJCVR.2011.042271

International Journal of Computational Vision and Robotics, 2011 Vol.2 No.2, pp.156 - 179

Received: 08 May 2021
Accepted: 12 May 2021

Published online: 02 Sep 2011 *

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