Designing Public Library Websites for Teens: A Conceptual Model

Teen Drawing 1

Teen Drawing

My dissertation research, Designing Public Library Websites for Teens: A Conceptual Model, directed by Dr. Denise Agosto, explores teen library websites (TLWs), public library websites for teens, by investigating teens’ mental models of TLWs and designer models as embedded in current TLWs.  At the intersection of human-computer interaction (HCI) and TLWs, there are fewer studies focused specifically on the teen user group and their information needs than on adult and children user groups.  Although, chronologically, teens fall between adults and children, teen users have their own information needs and expectations that should be addressed in research and design of TLWs.  My research addresses this gap by building a bridge that can be used to design TLWs that respond to the information needs and practices of teens 13 – 15 years old.  The research study design included two major parts: part one focused on extracting information directly from the teen user through drawings and interviews; and part two focused on web content analysis of current TLWs.  Each part of the study specifically addressed the components used to develop a conceptual model for the design of TLWs.   Findings suggest that for teen users, we need to challenge some design assumptions that do not resonate with teens when designing TLWs.

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