The effects of display size on performance

Ergonomics. 2015;58(3):337-54. doi: 10.1080/00140139.2014.973914. Epub 2015 Jan 20.


We examined the systematic effects of display size on task performance as derived from a standard perceptual and cognitive test battery. Specifically, three experiments examined the influence of varying viewing conditions on response speed, response accuracy and subjective workload at four differing screen sizes under three different levels of time pressure. Results indicated a ubiquitous effect for time pressure on all facets of response while display size effects were contingent upon the nature of the viewing condition. Thus, performance decrement and workload elevation were evident only with the smallest display size under the two most restrictive levels of time pressure. This outcome generates a lower boundary threshold for display screen size for this order of task demand. Extrapolations to the design and implementation of all display sizes and forms of cognitive and psychomotor demand are considered.

Keywords: accuracy; display size; response capacity; speed; time pressure.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Computer Terminals*
  • Equipment Design / psychology*
  • Female
  • Healthy Volunteers
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Random Allocation
  • Reaction Time
  • Sex Factors
  • Southeastern United States
  • Task Performance and Analysis*
  • Time Factors
  • Workload / psychology
  • Young Adult