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dc.contributor.advisorRegenbrecht, Holger
dc.contributor.advisorLanglotz, Tobias
dc.contributor.authorCollins, Jonny
dc.identifier.citationCollins, J. (2019). Interaction and Emotional Response in Immersive Virtual Reality Learning Environments (Thesis, Doctor of Philosophy). University of Otago. Retrieved from
dc.description.abstractVirtual Reality (VR) is seen as a promising tool for effective education. The flexibility, controllability, and interactive capabilities of VR allow for a range of immersive experiences. This presents an opportunity for educators and researchers to produce engaging tools with the potential to deliver a range of topical content to learners. Several issues become apparent while studying such applications, rooted in the complexities of learning theory. Different perspectives on how education should be practised, coupled with the difficult nature of evaluating learning outcomes, contribute to a complex problem. This makes it difficult to produce a consistent framework that encapsulates pedagogical and Human-Computer Interaction principles for a coherent integration with immersive VR. We contribute to the existing body of research working to address this issue through an investigation of interaction, expertise, and emotional response in immersive VR learning environments. We revitalize a historic research proposal that introduced the idea of using interactive virtual environments to present learners with novel conceptual problem spaces. Our first contribution reports on an investigation of the relationship between prior expertise and interactive experiences in immersive VR. We uncover difficulties associated with evaluating learning outcomes in VR systems, and the impact of interaction on users with varying expertise. In our second contribution, we refine our investigation to focus on insight learning, or "Aha! moments", their relationship with the users’ sense of presence in virtual environments, and the necessary element of engagement. We employ physiological sensors as part of a systematic approach to measurement and analysis of users’ emotional responses to immersive VR environments. The final contribution of this work reports on a real-world exploratory study in which an immersive VR learning environment is presented to inmates at a correctional facility. We are able to verify the implementation of our previously established method, and can demonstrate the real-world efficacy of immersive VR learning environments. This work is of interest to the Human-Computer Interaction and education-technology communities. Implications are particularly relevant for interaction and user experience design in VR environments.
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
dc.rightsAll items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subjectVirtual Reality
dc.subjectEducation Technology
dc.subjectImmersive Virtual Reality
dc.titleInteraction and Emotional Response in Immersive Virtual Reality Learning Environments
dc.language.rfc3066en Science of Philosophy of Otago
otago.openaccessAbstract Only
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