We have a tendency to recall the first and the last items in a series best
The Persuasive Patterns Card Deck is a collection of 54 design patterns driven by psychology, presented in a manner easily referenced and used as a brainstorming tool.Get your deck!
How do you order list items?
Present important items at the beginning and end of a list to maximize recall and the likelihood that users will remember those items when the time comes to make a decision. Initial items are remembered more efficiently than items later in a list. Items at the end of a list are recalled more easily immediately after their presentation.
Concretely, you will want to:
When recalling items from a list, items at the beginning and the end are better recalled than the items in the middle.
Our ability to better recall items at the beginning of a list is called the primacy effect, whereas our ability to recall items at the end of a list is called a recency effect.
Presenting long lists of information to users, significantly strains our limited resources and restricted memory systems – especially short-term memory, where only three or four items or chunks of information can be maintained at one time. Our ability to recall previously presented items is also severely impacted by events between initial processing and later recall.
2 Serial Position Effect: How to Create Better User Interfaces at Interactin-design.org
3 A two-process account of long-term serial position effects at APA PsychNet