The number of innovations in eye tracking and academic research papers has increased rapidly during the last 40 years.

Academic research into eye tracking is multifaceted. For a start some research goes into how to create eye tracking hardware. This research tries to optimize aspects such as : precision, calibration, cost, environment etc.

The other main side is the eye tracking software’s and how eye tracking can be applied to gain insights into processes we usually cannot tap into with traditional methodologies. Within psychology and neuroscience many different areas use eye tracking as supplementary or primary methodology: visiomotor system, biological segmentation, brain scans, reading patterns, human computer interaction and usability to name a few. And there is a clear trend. The academic interest in eye tracking is growing, possibly even at an exponential rate.

iMotions conducted a little exercise with Google Scholar and it reveals facts about the number of academic articles, which contains the keyword “eye tracking”. The underneath graph shows the articles being submitted since 1970 in 5 year intervals:

1970-74: 310
1975-79: 487
1980-84: 633
1985-89: 829
1990-94: 1
.320
1995-99: 2
.540
2000-04: 7
.060
2005-09: 15
.000
2010-14: 21
.600 (projected)

There can be various explanations for this growth pattern, however the general trend is clearly due to the increased genuine interest from the academic world for eye tracking studies.

To give a few real life examples here in Copenhagen, almost all our universities work with eye tracking: At the IT University of Copenhagen, researchers among other things investigate how to make eye tracking low cost, by using off the shelf components and develop open source software.

At Copenhagen Business School they use eye tracking in several institutes and among others they use it to gain insights on how consumers make decisions and react to brand information. Another example from CBS is their effort to construct a better class room, using eye tracking to investigate teacher-class room interaction.

So these are examples of institutions that contribute to the growing pool of academic publications within eye tracking!