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Huijuan (Jocelyn) Wu

Huijuan (Jocelyn) Wu is from China and has been working with me since Fall 2006. She completed her Master’s degree in computer science in 2005. She was a visiting researcher at NCR Financial Solutions Group Ltd. Her research interests are in Human-Computer Interaction, Usability, User-Centered design, User Experience as well as HCI related health informatics, e-commerce, mobile-commerce, online communities and cross-cultural interface design. Currently, she is working on her second year in the Ph.D. program. Her research topic is on building a model on the types of user interfaces and features of such interfaces in the health care area (specifically from an HCI perspective). Her PhD thesis deals with the application of Technology Acceptance, Distributed Cognition and Task Technology Fit Models in the health care area, specifically from the perspectives of nurses and other health care specialists in Intensive Care Units. Her research methodology includes observations, interviews, surveys, prototyping and more.

Ryan Getek

Ryan Getek successfully defended his PhD dissertation on Monday, August 30th, 2010. He had been working with me on his PhD since Fall 2006. His thesis focused on adaptive interfaces and  usability and privacy issues. His thesis title is A Usability Model for Web-Based Personalization Systems Based on Privacy and Security. Personalization approaches have become popular as content providers have attempted to provide features that differentiate their sites from the sites of competitors while enhancing usability. Personalization requires the acquisition of data that can be used to modify the content or presentation of the web page. The privacy and security issues related to acquiring this data carry significant concerns that affect the net benefit of the system to the user. Users have demonstrated that they often claim to be privacy conscious, but still provide information easily to sites on the Internet for widely varying levels of benefit in return.(Berendt, Gunther, & Spiekermann, 2005)
Personalization is becoming increasingly common. For instance, the Google toolbar has a browsing history feature that supports personalized search results and personalized news. The Gmail web-based email service searches user emails electronically in order to deliver personalized advertising. Additional personalization and customization features are also offered on sites such as Google News, MSN, and Yahoo!. For instance, MSN may collect data such as links clicked, search terms, the users a visitor interacts with, and location based on IP address for personalization.
These features require the collection, interpretation, and application of potentially sensitive user data.  In order to better align the privacy preferences of users to actual practice, a multi-phased survey was conducted that measured user preferences for how data should be obtained, used, and shared by sites. The survey included real-world personalization scenarios in order to identify the conditions under which users provide information to a site to support a personalized experience. The data was analyzed with a variety of techniques including non-parametric analyses for differences and correlations, ordinal regression, and principal components analysis.
The results facilitated the development of a usability model and associated recommendations for how sites that implement personalization should handle data used to support personalization. This includes communication mechanisms such as privacy policies and the impact of privacy and security breaches. As part of this research, a conceptual model is presented that demonstrates the relationships between factors such as usability, privacy and security, and complexity of a personalized architecture.

Michael Carlin
Mike & Ant after his successful defense, Dec. 8, 2008

Michael Carlin successfully defended his doctoral dissertation on Monday, December 8th, 2008. He had been working with me since 2004. He has been an alumnus of UMBC since 1996 when he graduated with his BS in Biology. Rather than continuing on in a career in medicine he chose to pursue his first love, technology. He entered the IS masters’ program in 1997 and was accepted into the IS Ph.D. program in 2001. Michael works full-time for UMBC’s Office of Information Technology as the Director of Infrastructure and Support. He has been married to his wife Cherisse since 2000 and has a new baby girl Shiloh born March 20, 2007. Michael has participated in HCI 2006 where he presented his paper entitled “Community Aspects in Electronic and Mobile Commerce: A Preliminary Study of American and Chinese Cultures”. Michael was the co-author of the paper titled “Identifying Cultural Variables in Information-Seeking” published in the Proceedings of the Tenth Americas Conference on Information Systems, New York, New York , August 2004. His thesis titile is Cross-Cultural E-Commerce Design Guidelines for American and Chinese College Student Populations: Results from an Empirical Comparative Study. Unprecedented business opportunities have arisen after China’s acceptance into the World Trade Organization (WTO) in 2001. China’s accession to the WTO is significant considering that the World Bank estimates China’s share of world trade to increase to 9.8% by 2020 making them second only to the United States. With this prospect have come difficulties as Western businesses attempt to interact with Eastern cultures which have unique and possibly significantly different views of business, peers, family, and, most importantly, shopping. Previous research indicated that cultural differences impact the design and implementation of e-commerce web sites between nations. The goal of this research was to develop a set of cross-cultural guidelines that would aid in the successful development of cross-cultural e-commerce sites between China and the United States and to identify remarkable differences between both nations. Based on the literature, seven cultural dimensions and nine shopping dimensions were identified as affecting overall e-shopping behavior. This research examined the interaction of cultural dimensions identified by Hofstede (1998), Hall (1976), and Trompenaars (1994) with aspects of e-shopping in order to implement them in a cross-cultural e-commerce shopping model. Based on these dimensions, a structured 55-question online survey was developed in both English and simplified Chinese.
The survey was administered online to 192 Chinese and 201 American college students. The overall internal reliability was 0.73 based on Cronbach’s alpha coefficient. A factor analysis was performed which resulted in four factors (buying decision; trust relationship; price logistics; habits) for China and three factors (transaction & trust; budget & environment; impulse purchasing) for the United States. These seven factors in conjunction with the ANOVA and correlation analysis aided in the creation of twelve guidelines for China and nine guidelines for the United States. These guidelines can be used to establish successful e-commerce web sites by taking into full consideration the cross-cultural complexities that exist between the United States and China.

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