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HCIL-2003-30

Baker, H., Duarte, N., Haririnia, A., Klinesmith, D., Lee, H., Velikovich, L., Wanga, A., Westhoff, M., Plaisant, C. (June 2003)
A Design Study of the Integration of Email and Role Management for University Students
(This TR was revised and expanded into HCIL-2005-30)
HCIL-2003-30, CS-TR-4687

In order to accommodate the increasing diversity of email users, applications have evolved in both functionality and user interface. In this study, we attempt to determine whether email user interfaces can be improved to serve a specific target population: college students. We present our results from college campus surveys that examine email usage patterns and subjective experiences among college students. From our survey feedback and related research, we conclude that email overload and feature intimidation are the greatest hindrances to email communication on campus. To address these problems, we propose employing role management to organize messages calendar and contacts in an email program for students, using school, work and family roles. We describe a prototype and user reactions. Our conclusion is that role management, integrated into email software, may help college students manage their email more effectively.


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