Investigating user behavior in slideshows and scrollytelling as narrative genres in medical visualization


In this study, we explore the impact of genre and navigation on user comprehension, preferences, and behaviors when experiencing data-driven disease stories. Our between-subject study (n=85) evaluated these aspects in-the-wild, with results pointing towards some general design considerations to keep in mind when authoring data-driven disease stories. Combining storytelling with interactive new media techniques, narrative medical visualization is a promising approach to communicating topics in medicine to a general audience in an accessible manner. For patients, visual storytelling may help them to better understand medical procedures and treatment options for more informed decision-making, boost their confidence and alleviate anxiety, and promote stronger personal health advocacy. Narrative medical visualization provides the building blocks for producing data-driven disease stories, which may be presented in several visual styles. These different styles correspond to different narrative genres, e.g., a Slideshow. Narrative genres can employ different navigational approaches. For instance, a Slideshow may rely on click interactions to advance through a story, while Scrollytelling typically uses vertical scrolling for navigation. While a common goal of a narrative medical visualization is to encourage a particular behavior, e.g., quitting smoking, it is unclear to what extent the choice of genre influences subsequent user behavior. Our study opens a new research direction into choice of narrative genre on user preferences and behavior in data-driven disease stories.

Computers & Graphics