Improving Visual Behavior Research in Communication Science: An Overview, Review, and Reporting Recommendations for Using Eye-Tracking Methods

Andy J. King, Nadine Bol, R. Glenn Cummins, Kevin K. John

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

10 Scopus citations


Eye tracking offers researchers an opportunity to collect an objective assessment of visual behavior. Visual behavior—referring broadly to metrics and measures of gaze positioning and movement—has been used to assess variables including exposure time, cognitive processing, prominence, and (visual) attention. Over the past decade, communication science researchers have increased their use of eye-tracking methods in published articles. During that same period, technological innovations have made eye-tracking units more affordable and accessible to interested researchers increasing the likelihood that eye-tracking research will continue to increase in the field. In this article, we provide information on eye tracking in hopes of improving the quality and reporting of eye-tracking research in communication. The article first provides an overview of basic eye-tracking information followed by a systematic review on the reporting of eye-tracking methods in communication-relevant research. We then provide eye-tracking research reporting recommendations and some ideas about how eye tracking might be integrated into scholarly work moving forward with the aim of improving the transparency and replicability of eye-tracking research in communication science.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-177
Number of pages29
JournalCommunication Methods and Measures
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 3 2019


Cite this