Conference paper

Effects of sharing text selections on gaze recurrence and interaction quality in a pair programming task

We present experimental findings from a dual eye-tracking study that illustrate the effect of different ways of sharing se- lection in remote pair-programming scenario. Forty pairs of engineering students had to complete several program under- standing tasks. The cross-recurrence of gaze, i.e. how much programmers look at the same spot within a short time span, varies with speech and selection. Gaze recurrence is higher during spoken episodes compared to silent episodes. Gaze recurrence is highest during spoken selections, when the se- lection is broadcast to both collaborators either as a dual se- lection (the programmers can each select their own portion of text) or a shared selection (programmers share a single selection). Broadcast selections serve as indexing sites for the selector as they attract non-selector’s gaze shortly af- ter they become visible. Spoken selections are more precise than silent selections which suggest their deictic function.


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