User Experience Professionals Association of DC

The Washington DC Chapter of the
User Experience Professionals Association  


Eye Tracking in User Experience Design: 4 Speakers + Dinner

  • Wednesday, August 18, 2010
  • 6:30 PM - 9:00 PM
  • Positano's Restaurant in Bethesda, MD

UPA-DC and HFES-Potomac Chapter invite you to attend an evening of dinner, networking and exciting eye-tracking discussions!

---- Sponsored by SMI International ----

Register for the event:


  • 6:30-7:00 Meet and Greet & Registration
  • 7:00-8:00 Three-Course Dinner
  • 8:00-9:00 Four Exciting Talks with Q&A with dessert and coffee 

If you are not a member of UPA-DC and/or HFES-Potomac Chapter, join today!  Go to the UPA-DC web site and/or the HFES-Potomac Chapter web site and join to get a member discount!


4948 Fairmont Avenue 
Bethesda, MD 20814

Eye Tracking Topics:

Beyond the Heatmap: An Overview of the Capabilities of Today’s Eye Tracking Solutions 

(Jennifer Knodler, SMI)

It’s testing time.  You’re the client.  You’re in the test facility behind the two-way mirror.  You’re there to understand the usability testing methodology that your vendor is employing in your study.  They’re using a variety of common tools - including eye tracking.  In this case the vendor is Jennifer Knodler of SMI Eye & Gaze Tracking.  She’s running a quick study to show you the behavior of the participants in an eye tracking setup and will follow that with an overview of types of visualizations and statistics that are readily available in today’s analysis software tools. Finally, she’ll highlight real use cases that effectively harmonized screen-based studies and those on more complex interfaces such as smart phones and iPads so that we may learn how different, less traditional applications can still be effectively tested.

Developing a Real-Time Eye Tracking System for Predicting Postcompletion Errors 

(Raj Ratwani)

Procedural errors occur despite a user having the correct knowledge of how to perform a particular task. Previous research has mostly focused on preventing these errors by redesigning tasks to eliminate error prone steps. A different method of preventing errors, specifically postcompletion errors (e.g. forgetting to retrieve the original document from a photocopier), has been proposed by Ratwani, McCurry and Trafton (2008) which uses theoretically motivated eye movement measures to predict when a user will make an error. The details of the predictive eye movement model and the subsequent development of a real-time postcompletion error prediction system will be presented.

Using Eye Tracking to Assess Users' Attention and Information Processing: The Dos and The Don'ts 

(Matt Peterson)

The use of eye tracking is an attractive technology, as it allows us to potentially assess users' cognitive states noninvasively and in realtime.  However, as will be discussed in this presentation, a proper understanding of the task, the technology, and the methodology is necessary to prevent the researcher and practitioner from drawing erroneous conclusions from their eye tracking data.

Reading Patterns for Expert and Lower Literacy Readers: Implications for Content Design 

(Kathryn Summers)

Everyone knows how hard it is to convert skim/browsing behavior to actual, engaged, reading of online information. But what if you're facing the added barrier of users who don't read well, or who have low English proficiency and who come to your content with added reluctance? Learn about content design strategies that help convert skimming to reading for both expert and non-expert readers from recent eyetracking research sponsored by NIH. (Remember that 50% of the adult population in the U.S. read at the 8th grade level or below!)

Speaker Bios

Jennifer Knodler is the Director of Sales & Marketing and Lead Application Engineer for the UX Segment for SMI’s North American office located in Boston, MA.  With a background in Biomedical Engineering from Boston University she began her work at SMI focused on eye tracking technologies that were best suited for clinical medical applications.  In the past few years, responding to an increase in demand to understand attention from the user experience community, she worked to introduce eye tracking tools into the applied science markets of user experience testing and marketing research.  After 6 years with SMI, Jennifer is now well informed concerning standard practices, tools and methodologies.  Her continued assistance in the integration of reliable, non-invasive and smart eye tracking solutions into a standard testing protocol is helping to reduce the gap in what the tools can provide and what we strive for as user experience practitioners hoping to gain deeper insight to the natural behavior of our users. 

Raj Ratwani is a Senior Research Scientist at Perceptronics Solutions Inc. and an affiliate
of George Mason University. His research interests are in human error, interruptions and multi-
tasking, and the cognition of visualizations. Prior to joining Perceptronics he was a National
Research Council post-doctoral fellow at the Naval Research Laboratory. Raj received his B.S
in Cognitive Science from UC, San Diego and his M.A and Ph.D in Psychology from George
Mason University.

Matt Peterson is an Associate Professor in the Human Factors and Applied Cognition division of the Department of Psychology at George Mason University, as well as a member of both the Neuroscience PhD program and the Center for Neuroergonomics, Technology, and Cognition (CENTEC). His research is on visual attention and related areas, such as eye movements, working memory, multitasking, and visual cognition. He received his PhD. from the University of Kansas followed by postdoctoral training in psychophysiology at the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.  Dr. Peterson's articles have appeared in numerous scholarly journals, such as Psychological Science, Cognition, Perception and Psychophysics, and Cerebral Cortex. Additionally, his work has been cited in The Wall Street Journal, Science Daily, and The Atlantic Monthly. His research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health, the United States Army, and the United States Air Force.

Kathryn Summers' research focuses on making information easier for people with lower literacy skills or low English proficiency to find,  navigate, and read on the Web. Earlier work included working with Nancy Kaplan and Stuart Moulthrop on a three-year grant from NSF to develop an intergenerational design team with faculty, graduate students, and children. The SIAT KidsTeam, in collaboration with a team at the University of Maryland's Human Computer Interaction Lab, helped to design interfaces for the International Children's Digital Library.  Kathryn also directs the graduate program in Interaction Design and Information Architecture at the University of Baltimore, and directs the school's User Research Lab. The Lab supports research activities for faculty, students, and local businesses.

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