The User Knows: Considering the Cognitive Contribution of the User in the Design of Auditory Warnings

  • Catherine Stevens
  • Agnes Petocz
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 5639)


An experiment that investigated effects of modality, warning type, and task demand on warning recognition speed and accuracy is reported. Using the experiment as a specific example, we argue for the importance of considering the cognitive contribution of the user (viz. prior learned associations) in the warning design process. Drawing on semiotics and cognitive psychology, we highlight the indexical nature of so-called auditory icons or natural indicators and argue that the cogniser is an indispensable element in the tripartite nature of signification.


Auditory warnings Workload Modality Icons Semiotics 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Catherine Stevens
    • 1
  • Agnes Petocz
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Psychology & MARCS Auditory LaboratoriesUniversity of Western SydneySouth Penrith DCAustralia

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