Assessing navigation in real and virtual environments: a validation study
S T Koenig, G P Crucian, J C Dalrymple-Alford, A Dünser
University of Canterbury, NEW ZEALAND
For navigation ability, a transfer of knowledge from virtual training environments to real-world scenarios has been shown in several studies in the past. The purpose of this investigation is to demonstrate the equivalence of a series of navigation tasks in complex real-world and virtual buildings. Instead of testing knowledge transfer in very simple environments, identical tasks are performed in either version of a complex building. 29 participants are shown twelve landmarks, followed by a battery of tasks which are carried out in the real building by half of the participants, whereas the other half performs identical tasks in a virtual model of the same environment. No significant differences or effects were found, but due to the multifaceted nature of the gathered data and large variability within groups, overlap of both groups’ distributions was minimal. To discover the underlying factors of this variability, further research is needed. Usability and future development of virtual environments are discussed.
Sebastian Keonig (lead author, pictured) ICDVRAT Conference Website