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Online dictionaries: expectations and demands

  • This chapter presents empirical findings on the question which criteria are making a good online dictionary using data on expectations and demands collected in the first study (N=684), completed with additional results from the second study (N=390) which examined more closely whether the respondents had differentiated views on individual aspects of the criteria rated in the first study. Our results show that the classical criteria of reference books (e.g. reliability, clarity) were rated highest by our participants, whereas the unique characteristics of online dictionaries (e.g. multimedia, adaptability) were rated and ranked as (partly) unimportant. To verify whether or not the poor rating of these innovative features was a result of the fact that the subjects are not used to online dictionaries incorporating those features, we integrated an experiment into the second study. Our results revealed a learning effect: Participants in the learning-effect condition, i. e. respondents who were first presented with examples of possible innovative features of online dictionaries,judged adaptability and multimedia to be more useful than participants who did not have this information. Thus, our data point to the conclusion that developing innovative features is worthwhile but that it is necessary to be aware of the fact that users can only be convinced of its benefits gradually.

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Author:Carolin Müller-SpitzerORCiDGND, Alexander KoplenigORCiDGND
Parent Title (German):Using online dictionaries
Series (Serial Number):Lexicographica : series maior (145)
Publisher:De Gruyter
Place of publication:Berlin; Boston
Editor:Carolin Müller-Spitzer
Document Type:Part of a Book
Year of first Publication:2014
Date of Publication (online):2014/04/23
Tag:accessibility; adaptability; clarity; innovative features; multimedia; reliability of content; up to date content; user demands
GND Keyword:Benutzer; Computerunterstützte Lexikographie
First Page:143
Last Page:188
DDC classes:400 Sprache / 430 Deutsch
Open Access?:ja
Leibniz-Classification:Sprache, Linguistik
Licence (German):License LogoUrheberrechtlich geschützt