Design of Experiment Comparing Users of Virtual Reality Head-Mounted Displays and Desktop Computers

  • Steven C. MallamEmail author
  • Salman Nazir
  • Sathiya Kumar Renganayagalu
  • Jørgen Ernstsen
  • Sunniva Veie
  • Anders Emil Edwinson
Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 822)


The use of computer-generated simulations have been standard practice in a wide range of tertiary and vocational education and training applications for decades. The growing ubiquity, relative affordability, increasing computing power and functionality of Virtual Reality headsets are creating new opportunities for personalized, immersive simulation experiences that can be used anywhere and anytime. For Virtual Reality headset experiences to be sustainable and appropriate for long-term usage in education and training programs, it is critical to investigate the practicalities of implementing such a technology. Thus, the investigation of emerging Virtual Reality technologies against conventional training systems can provide a better understanding of their impact. This paper presents an experimental design used to compare user performance, user motivation and user experience of searching tasks in identical virtual environments between two system configurations: (i) Virtual Reality Head-Mounted Display and a (ii) traditional desktop computer. A pilot study (participants N = 5) was performed with a between-group experimental design, using objective and subjective measures. The outcomes of this study and the lessons learned from developing, testing and refining the experimental design contribute to the broader knowledge of investigating and validating Virtual Reality Head-Mounted Displays for education and training applications.


Immersive environments Simulation Experimental design Computer based training Objective performance assessment 



The authors would like to thank the Research Council of Norway for financial support of this research program (project number: 269424).


  1. Ackerman PL (1988) Determinants of individual differences during skill acquisition: cognitive abilities and information processing. J Exp Psychol Gen 117(3):288–318CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Berg LP, Vance JM (2017) Industry use of virtual reality in product design and manufacturing: a survey. Virtual Reality 21(1):1–17CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Buttussi F, Chittaro L (2018) Effects of different types of virtual reality display on presence and learning in a safety training scenario. IEEE Trans Visual Comput Graph 24(2):1063–1076CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Castells MI, Ordás S, Barahona C, Moncunill J, Muyskens C, Hofman W, Cross S, Kondratiev A, Boran-Keshishyan A, Popov A, Skorokhodov S (2015) Model course to revalidate deck officers’ competences using simulators. WMU J Marit Aff 15(1):163–185CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Davis S, Nesbitt K, Nalivaiko E (2014) A systematic review of cybersickness. In: Proceedings of the 2014 conference on interactive entertainment. ACM, New York, pp 1–9Google Scholar
  6. Deci E, Ryan R (1985) Intrinsic motivation and self-determination in human behavior, vol 3. Plenum Press, New YorkCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Eccles JS, Wigfield A (2002) Motivational beliefs, values, and goals. Annu Rev Psychol 53:109–132CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Garris R, Ahlers R, Driskell JE (2016) Games, motivation, and learning: a research and practice model. Simul Gaming 33(4):441–467CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Gredler ME, Broussard SC, Garrison MEB (2004) The relationship between classroom motivation and academic achievement in elementary school aged children. Fam Consum Sci Res J 33(2):106–120CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Huber T, Paschold M, Hansen C, Wunderling T, Lang H, Kneist W (2017) New dimensions in surgical training: immersive virtual reality laparoscopic simulation exhilarates surgical staff. Surg Endosc 31(11):4472–4477CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. International Organization for Standardization (ISO) (2010) ISO 9241 Ergonomics of human-system interaction—part 210: human-centred design for interactive systems. ISO, GenevaGoogle Scholar
  12. Janssen D, Tummel C, Richert AS, Isenhardt I (2016) Towards measuring user experience, activation and task performance in immersive virtual learning environments for students in immersive learning research network. In: Proceedings of international conference on immersive learning. Springer, Berlin, pp 45–58Google Scholar
  13. Jensen L, Konradsen F (2017) A review of the use of virtual reality head-mounted displays in education and training. Educ Inf Technol 1–15Google Scholar
  14. Kennedy RS, Lane NE, Berbaum KS, Lilenthal MG (1993) Simulator sickness questionnaire: an enhanced method for quantifying simulator sickness. Int J Aviat Psychol 3(3):203–220CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kobayashi H (2005) Use of simulators in assessment, learning and teaching of mariners. WMU J Marit Aff 4(1):57–75CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Lai ER (2011) Motivation: a literature review. Pearson, LondonGoogle Scholar
  17. Langan-Fox J, Armstrong K, Salvin N, Anglim J (2002) Process in skill acquisition: motivation, interruptions, memory, affective states, and metacognition. Aust Psychol 37(2):104–117CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Laugwitz B, Held T, Schrepp M (2008) Construction and evaluation of a user experience questionnaire. In: USAB 2008. Lecture notes in computer science, vol 5298. Springer, Berlin, pp 63–76Google Scholar
  19. Monteiro V, Mata L, Peixoto F (2015) Intrinsic motivation inventory: psychometric properties in the context of first language and mathematics learning. Psicologia: Reflexão e Crítica 28(3):434–443Google Scholar
  20. Nazir S, Totaro R, Brambilla S, Colombo S, Manca D (2012) Virtual reality and augmented-virtual reality as tools to train industrial operators. Comput Aided Chem Eng 30:1397–1401CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Saffer D (2010) Designing for interaction: creating innovative applications and devices, 2nd edn. New Riders, BerkeleyGoogle Scholar
  22. Salas E, Tannenbaum SI, Kraiger K, Smith-Jentsch KA (2012) The science of training and development in organizations: what matters in practice. Psychol Sci Public Interest 13(2):74–101CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Sanfilippo F (2017) A multi-sensor fusion framework for improving situational awareness in demanding maritime training. Reliab Eng Syst Saf 161:12–24CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Soegaard M, Dam RF (2013) The encyclopedia of human–computer interaction, 2nd edn. The Interaction Design Foundation, ÅrhusGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Steven C. Mallam
    • 1
    Email author
  • Salman Nazir
    • 1
  • Sathiya Kumar Renganayagalu
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jørgen Ernstsen
    • 1
  • Sunniva Veie
    • 1
  • Anders Emil Edwinson
    • 1
  1. 1.Training and Assessment Research Group, Department of Maritime OperationsUniversity of South-Eastern NorwayBorreNorway
  2. 2.Department of Virtual and Augmented RealityInstitute for Energy TechnologyHaldenNorway

Personalised recommendations