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A Comparison of the Effectiveness of a Dichotomous Key and a Multi-Access Key to Woodlice

Morse, David R. and Tardival, G.M. and Spicer, J. (1996) A Comparison of the Effectiveness of a Dichotomous Key and a Multi-Access Key to Woodlice. Technical report. UKC, University of Kent, Canterbury, UK (KAR id:21343)


The efficiency, accuracy and usability of a multiaccess key, a paper based dichotomous key and a computer based version of the same were compared. All three identification aids covered the same group of woodlice, using comparable information. The keys were evaluated by first year Biology undergraduates at Sheffield University. Students using a computer based method were slower to reach an identification than those using the paper key. The number of correct identifications was similar for the three keys. Students were more confident of identifications made using the hypertext key but this identification was slightly more likely to be wrong than those made using the other two keys. Students found the computer based keys easier to use, but suggested a number of improvements to them.

Item Type: Reports and Papers (Technical report)
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics (inc Computing science) > QA 76 Software, computer programming,
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Computing, Engineering and Mathematical Sciences > School of Computing
Depositing User: Mark Wheadon
Date Deposited: 26 Aug 2009 20:02 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2021 09:59 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

University of Kent Author Information

Morse, David R..

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