The nature, antecedents and impacts of visue-spatial Mental Models of web interface design.

This paper develops an integrated theoretical framework that links visuo-spatial mental models of Web interface design to user satisfaction, and reports on a controlled experiment aimed at investigating the nature of these mental models. Using data from more than 500 subjects in conjunction with both graphical and statistical analyses, we find that Web users possess a strongly cohesive shared mental model of the way in which a Web interface should be designed. In addition to describing and quantifying this shared visuospatial mental model, this paper also shows how both experience and the physiological properties of the human visual system give rise to such models, and discusses the implications of the results for organizational website design, scientific theory, and future research in this area.