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An Empirical Investigation of Color Temperature and Gender Effects on Web Aesthetics

Constantinos K. Coursaris, Sarah J. Sweirenga, and Ethan Watrall

Journal of Usability Studies, Volume 3, Issue 3, May 2008, pp. 103-117

Article Contents


A total of 356 subjects were recruited for this Web-based voluntary study via email announcements on various databases and electronic mailing lists. Of the 356 participants recruited, 328 usable data sets were collected, with a minimum of 72 subjects per group. All participants used the same Web site, but each treatment involved the use of a discriminant color design described above. The minimum sample size for the selected method, PLS, is 10 times the number of the most complex construct (Chin, 1998). In this study endogenous constructs consist of five items each, thus our sample size far exceeded the needed 50 cases. Each subject participated in only one treatment group, and assignment of subjects to groups was fully randomized to control for confounding effects due to differences in subject characteristics. The sample exhibited a relatively even split between males and females (170 males to 158 females). The average age was 34 (ranging from 18 to 70), and 83% described themselves as Caucasian/White (while another 7% as Asian/Pacific Islander and another 10% fell under remaining categories). The participants were almost entirely college-educated and had an average experience of 17 years with computers and 10 years with the World Wide Web, respectively. ANOVA tests found no significant differences for subjects in the various treatment groups in terms of these control variables, thereby ensuring the successful randomization of assignment across groups.

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