Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Voting Systems For Seniors Can Improve Voting Accuracy And Speed

Date:
December 30, 2007
Source:
Human Factors and Ergonomics Society
Summary:
Researchers have identified ways to improve electronic voting accuracy among older voters while also shortening waiting time at the polls. They tested four configurations and found that the pure touchscreen format with one ballot per screen was found to produce the most accurate results, but the pure touchscreen with full ballot on a single screen showed the fastest completion times. As is often the case with human-machine interfaces, there is a trade-off between accuracy and speed.

Human factors researchers at Florida State University have identified ways to improve electronic voting accuracy among older voters while also shortening waiting time at the polls.

During the 2000 presidential election in Palm Beach County, Florida, voting machines and ballot formats came under national scrutiny after it was found that more than 29,000 ballots were spoiled. The use of punchcard machines and a confusing ballot layout caused some voters to select an unintended candidate or double-punch the ballot.

In 2004 in Ohio, the issue of time at the polls became a critical factor; despite the use of electronic voting machines, a confusing ballot layout and an insufficient number of machines caused long waiting lines and prevented some Ohioans from voting.

These problems led Tiffany Jastrzembski and Neil Charness to test ballot and machine usability with a particular focus on older voters, who – because of reduced vision and motor control – tend to have more problems using computers, especially under time pressure. These researchers adopted a gerontological approach, which implies that when systems are made easier for older people to use, performance among younger users also improves.

The researchers tested voting performance with 30 younger (18–26 years old) and 30 older (ages 64–77) study participants using four ballot layouts and machine designs:

  1. touchscreen and full ballot on one screen,
  2. touchscreen and one ballot per screen,
  3. touchscreen plus keypad and full ballot on one screen, and
  4. touchscreen plus keypad and one ballot per screen.

The pure touchscreen format with one ballot per screen was found to produce the most accurate results, but the pure touchscreen with full ballot on a single screen showed the fastest completion times. As is often the case with human-machine interfaces, there is a trade-off between accuracy and speed. Even a small percentage of errors could potentially result in hundreds of thousands of miscast ballots, which must be weighed against the need to reduce waiting times at the polls.

The results of their study were published in the fall 2007 issue of Ergonomics in Design. Jastrzembski and Charness recommend additional studies – again with older voters – that can lead to more user-friendly ballot design and electronic voting systems for users of all ages.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. "Voting Systems For Seniors Can Improve Voting Accuracy And Speed." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 December 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071227183738.htm>.
Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. (2007, December 30). Voting Systems For Seniors Can Improve Voting Accuracy And Speed. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071227183738.htm
Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. "Voting Systems For Seniors Can Improve Voting Accuracy And Speed." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071227183738.htm (accessed October 22, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Thanks, Marty McFly! Hoverboards Could Be Coming In 2015

Thanks, Marty McFly! Hoverboards Could Be Coming In 2015

Newsy (Oct. 21, 2014) If you've ever watched "Back to the Future Part II" and wanted to get your hands on a hoverboard, well, you might soon be in luck. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Robots to Fly Planes Where Humans Can't

Robots to Fly Planes Where Humans Can't

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 21, 2014) Researchers in South Korea are developing a robotic pilot that could potentially replace humans in the cockpit. Unlike drones and autopilot programs which are configured for specific aircraft, the robots' humanoid design will allow it to fly any type of plane with no additional sensors. Ben Gruber reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Graphene Paint Offers Rust-Free Future

Graphene Paint Offers Rust-Free Future

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Oct. 21, 2014) British scientists have developed a prototype graphene paint that can make coatings which are resistant to liquids, gases, and chemicals. The team says the paint could have a variety of uses, from stopping ships rusting to keeping food fresher for longer. Jim Drury reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
China Airlines Swanky New Plane

China Airlines Swanky New Plane

Buzz60 (Oct. 21, 2014) China Airlines debuted their new Boeing 777, and it's more like a swanky hotel bar than an airplane. Enjoy high-tea, a coffee bar, and a full service bar with cocktails and spirits, and lie-flat in your reclining seats. Sean Dowling (@SeanDowlingTV) has the details. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins