Personalityzation: UI Personalization, Theoretical Grounding in HCI and Design Research

Ofer Arazy, Oded Nov, Nanda Kumar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Personalization is an effective means for accommodating differences between individuals. Therefore, the personalization of a system’s user interface (UI) features can enhance usability. To date, UI personalization approaches have been largely divorced from psychological theories of personality, and the user profiles constructed by extant personalization techniques do not map directly onto the fundamental personality traits examined in the psychology literature. In line with recent calls to ground the design of information systems in behavioral theory, we maintain that personalization that is informed by psychology literature is advantageous. More specifically, we advocate an approach termed “personalityzation”, where UI features are adapted to an explicit model of a user’s personality. We demonstrate the proposed personalityzation approach through a proof-of-concept in the context of social recommender systems. We identify two key contributions to information systems research. First, extending prior works on adaptive interfaces, we introduce a UI personalization framework that is grounded in psychology theory of personality. Second, we reflect on how our proposed personalityzation framework could inform the discourse in design research regarding the theoretical grounding of system’s design.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)43-69
Number of pages27
JournalAIS Transactions on Human-Computer Interaction
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2015


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