The use of eye tracking technology to assess the interpretation of radiographic images

Laura McLaughlin, RR Bond, Ciara Hughes, J McConnell, N Woznitza, A Elsayad, A Cairns, D Finlay, S. L. McFadden

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Background:Studies have used eye tracking technology to assess the radiographer’s ability to identify pulmonary lung nodules within chest images. Eye tracking technology has provided an insight into the cognitive processes during image interpretation. Within this study we use eye tracking technology to assess image interpretation skills between various levels of experience in radiography and on a variety of pathologies.Method:Eye tracking data was collected using the Tobii X60 eye tracker during participant interpretation of 8 radiographic images including the MSK system and chest. A total of 464 image interpretations were collected. Participants consisted of 21 radiography students, 19 qualified radiographers and 18 reporting radiographers. Results:Reporting radiographers demonstrated a 15% greater accuracy rate (p≤0.001), were more confident (p≤0.001) and took a mean of 2.4s longer to decide on image features compared to students. Reporting radiographers had a 15% greater accuracy rate (p≤0.001), were more confident (p≤0.001) and took longer to form an image diagnosis (p=0.02) than radiographers. Reporting radiographers had a greater mean fixation duration (p=0.01), mean fixation count (p=0.04) and mean visit count (p=0.04) within the areas of pathology compared to students but no significant difference (fixation duration p= ,fixation counts p= and fixation visits p= ) than radiographers. Conclusion:Eye gaze metrics were indicative of the radiographer’s competency. Participants’ thoughts and decisions were quantified using the eye tracking data. Eye tracking metrics also reflected the different search strategies that each group of participants adopted during their image interpretations.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUnknown Host Publication
Number of pages3
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 14 Jun 2017
EventUKRC - Manchester
Duration: 14 Jun 2017 → …


Period14/06/17 → …



  • radiography
  • eye tracking
  • interpretation
  • musculoskeletal
  • chest

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