The study of applying pathfinder analysis to university library websites construction

Jiann Cherng Shieh, Wan Chu Liao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Card sorting and cluster analysis are the methods applied most frequently in information architecture studies. However, the similarity rating and pathfinder analysis have been widely adapted to structural knowledge elicitation and presentation in educational psychology studies. This study investigated how similarity rating and pathfinder analysis are used to construct library websites and what are their effects. We took the National Taiwan Normal University Library website as our study case. Randomly 30 students were selected as the subjects to conduct card sorting or similarity rating on the picked out site labels. Next we applied cluster analysis and pathfinder analysis to the above results to generate four websites. Finally, we again randomly selected 120 students into four groups to conduct findability tests on four websites respectively. By the statistical analysis, we concluded that there is no significant difference between card sorting and similarity rating on findability; however, if card sorting is applied to structural knowledge elicitation, there will be significant difference between cluster analysis and pathfinder analysis on findability.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Educational Media and Library Science
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Jan 1



  • Card sorting
  • Cluster analysis
  • Findability
  • Pathfinder analysis
  • Similarity rating

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Conservation
  • Information Systems
  • Archaeology
  • Library and Information Sciences

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