Designing Online Courseware with Reading Patterns
If you’ve ever designed a website, you’ve probably done some research about how people read web content. Whether you’re designing your own web page or online courseware, it’s important to keep in mind that eyetracking studies have found most people read in an F-shaped pattern: two horizontal stripes followed by a vertical stripe.
Studies show that website and online courseware readers’ eyes most often fixate at the upper left of a page, then hover in that area before going left to right. Only after skimming through the top portion of the page do their eyes typically float further down.
People also tend to read quickly, so keep your sentences short. Online courseware content that corresponds to the movement of the average eye will prove more effective than a design that doesn’t.
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