Virtual Reality

, Volume 12, Issue 3, pp 151–161 | Cite as

Transfer of learning in virtual environments: a new challenge?

  • Cyril BossardEmail author
  • Gilles Kermarrec
  • Cédric Buche
  • Jacques Tisseau
Original Article


The aim of all education is to apply what we learn in different contexts and to recognise and extend this learning to new situations. Virtual learning environments can be used to build skills. Recent research in cognitive psychology and education has shown that acquisitions are linked to the initial context. This provides a challenge for virtual reality in education or training. A brief overview of transfer issues highlights five main ideas: (1) the type of transfer enables the virtual environment (VE) to be classified according to what is learned; (2) the transfer process can create conditions within the VE to facilitate transfer of learning; (3) specific features of VR must match and comply with transfer of learning; (4) transfer can be used to assess a VE’s effectiveness; and (5) future research on transfer of learning must examine the singular context of learning. This paper discusses how new perspectives in cognitive psychology influence and promote transfer of learning through the use of VEs.


Transfer of learning Training Virtual environment Learning models 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cyril Bossard
    • 1
    Email author
  • Gilles Kermarrec
    • 1
  • Cédric Buche
    • 1
  • Jacques Tisseau
    • 1
  1. 1.LISyC UEB UBO-ENIB-ENSIETA, European Center for Virtual RealityPlouzanéFrance

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