Spatial ability and virtual reality: Training for interface efficiency
Lane, David M.
Master of Arts
Virtual Reality (VR) has been deemed the interface of the future. However many people get lost navigating through a simple DOS hierarchy due to low spatial ability. Research has shown that spatial ability can be increased through training, and that there is a link between spatial ability and VR. This experiment attempts to replicate and combine those studies by trying to improve the subjects' spatial ability and increase the efficiency of a VR interface. Thirty subjects were pre- and posttested on their spatial ability, as well as their ability to navigate through a virtual environment. Half the subjects underwent 15 hours of training using seven spatial ability tests. The trained subjects improved their spatial ability, not just on those seven tests, but in general. There was no significant correlation between spatial ability and ability to navigate in VR, and no difference in improvement in that ability between the two groups.
Experimental psychology; Computer science