You are here:

Aesthetics and E-Assessment: The Interplay of Emotional Design and Learner Performance

Distance Education Volume 32, Number 3, ISSN 0158-7919


The purpose of this study has been to examine the impacts of aesthetic design on learner experience in an e-assessment environment, specifically on cognitive load and task performance. Sixty-six postsecondary students were randomly assigned to one of two aesthetic design configurations of the e-assessment environment: (1) an environment with low consideration to aesthetic design (i.e., designed to provide the utility and usability necessary to complete the tasks), and (2) the same environment (i.e., identical utility, task objectives, and task media) designed with several aesthetic enhancements to heighten the learner experience. Findings suggest that aesthetic design significantly decreased participant cognitive load and increased participant satisfaction, willingness to continue use, voluntary self-assessment time, and task performance. Qualitative data support these findings. The results of this study provide practical insights for designers exploring the valuable relationship between aesthetic design and the learner experience. (Contains 7 tables and 5 figures.)


Miller, C. (2011). Aesthetics and E-Assessment: The Interplay of Emotional Design and Learner Performance. Distance Education, 32(3), 307-337. Retrieved May 26, 2019 from .

This record was imported from ERIC on April 19, 2013. [Original Record]

ERIC is sponsored by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education.

Copyright for this record is held by the content creator. For more details see ERIC's copyright policy.


Cited By

View References & Citations Map

These links are based on references which have been extracted automatically and may have some errors. If you see a mistake, please contact