The effectiveness of an internet-based career development program: the impact of matching animated agent ethnic appearance
The current study is a follow up to a previous evaluation of Believe It!, an internet-based career development program for adolescent girls. This study attempted to extend the program's effectiveness by manipulating animated agent appearance based on literature suggesting that agent appearance has implications for human-computer program interface. Participants included 52 Latinas (ages 11 to 14) randomly assigned to view one of two versions of the revised career program. Each version contained identical content but included animated agents designed to represent different ethnicities. Pre and post-treatment scores for three career belief measures and an occupational stereotype measure were analyzed using a MANCOVA. The results were not significant and further analyses revealed that the results were confounded by complications with the perceived ethnicity of the animated agents. Despite a lack of significance the results provide enriching information about Latina adolescent perception of ethnicity.