Doctoral course - Behavior Change Support Systems and Consumer Behavior
The effectiveness of a Behavior Change Support System rests, in part, on the context-sensitive responsiveness of individual consumers, given their inherent biases and motivations for change. Applied behavioral research (i.e., system design or redesign involving nudging to achieve desired behavior change) should ideally rely on context-specific field testing--often experimental in nature--to aid in predicting the likely outcomes of proposed BCSS’s on the population of intended (targeted) users. Lessons (recommendations and pitfalls to avoid) from leveraging lab-based or field-based experimental results to evaluate the likely success of novel systems (or specific novel system features) that will function “in the wild” (i.e., real world contexts) will be addressed. Students will practice designing experimental tests of the effectiveness of specific system features, as well as critically evaluate other methods (e.g., developing appropriate questions for in-depth interviews with target audience members and system designers, mining any natural experimental data that may exist) to enhance understanding of the impacts of the system on different stakeholders, and to illuminate constraints on potential solutions/features within the system.