The eyes have it: Using eye tracking to inform information processing strategies in multi-attributes choices

from Health Economics at on December 27, 2017 at 09:41AM


Although choice experiments (CEs) are widely applied in economics to study choice behaviour, understanding of how individuals process attribute information remains limited. We show how eye-tracking methods can provide insight into how decisions are made. Participants completed a CE, while their eye movements were recorded. Results show that although the information presented guided participants’ decisions, there were also several processing biases at work. Evidence was found of (a) top-to-bottom, (b) left-to-right, and (c) first-to-last order biases. Experimental factors—whether attributes are defined as “best” or “worst,” choice task complexity, and attribute ordering—also influence information processing. How individuals visually process attribute information was shown to be related to their choices. Implications for the design and analysis of CEs and future research are discussed.