I did that! Measuring Users’ Experience of Agency in their own Actions

Coyle, David; Moore, James W.; Kristenson, Per Ola; Fletcher, Paul C. and Blackwell, Alan F.. 2012. 'I did that! Measuring Users’ Experience of Agency in their own Actions'. In: CHI 2012. Austin, Texas, United States. [Conference or Workshop Item]


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Abstract or Description

Cognitive neuroscience defines the sense of agency as the experience of controlling one’s own actions and, through this control, affecting the external world. We believe that the sense of personal agency is a key factor in how people experience interactions with technology. This paper draws on theoretical perspectives in cognitive neuroscience and describes two implicit methods through which personal agency can be empirically investigated. We report two experiments applying these methods to HCI problems. One shows that a new input modality - skin-based interaction - can substantially increase users' sense of agency. The second demonstrates that variations in the parameters of assistance techniques such as predictive mouse acceleration can have a significant impact on users' sense of agency. The methods presented provide designers with new ways of evaluating and refining empowering interaction techniques and interfaces, in which users experience an instinctive sense of control and ownership over their actions.

Item Type:

Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)


Agency, HCI, Computer, Sense of agency, Control

Departments, Centres and Research Units:



5 May 2012Published

Event Location:

Austin, Texas, United States

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

28 Nov 2012 17:00

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 15:46



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