Some of the material in is restricted to members of the community. By logging in, you may be able to gain additional access to certain collections or items. If you have questions about access or logging in, please use the form on the Contact Page.
With the aim of improving information retrieval system design, this study explored the effect of cognitive load on the propensity to reformulate queries during information seeking on the Web, specifically the effect of manipulating three affective components that contribute to cognitive load--mental demand, temporal demand, and frustration A significant difference in the propensity of query reformulation behavior was found between searchers exposed to cognitive load manipulations and searchers who were not exposed. Those exposed to cognitive load manipulations, namely, mental demand, temporal demand, and frustration, made 2.18 times fewer search queries than searchers not exposed. Furthermore, the NASA-TLX cognitive load scores of searchers who were exposed to the three cognitive load manipulations were higher than those of searchers who were not exposed. However, the propensity of query reformulation behavior did not differ across task types. The findings suggest that a dual-task method and NASA-TLX assessment serve as good indicators of cognitive load. Because the findings show that cognitive load hinders a searcher's interaction with information search tools, this study concludes by recommending strategies for reducing cognitive load when designing information systems, or user interfaces.