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Researchers and practitioners have claimed that virtual reality provides realistic and immersive experiences that allow the technology to produce a wider range of scenarios than equivalent real-life training and development programs, which is believed to result in better outcomes. But is there evidence to support this?

Researchers at the University of South Alabama and Montclair State University conducted a meta-analysis of studies related to using virtual reality training programs for social skill development. Their findings indicate that knowledge-based virtual reality training programs can be effective. In addition, they found that gamified VR training programs were just as effective as VR training programs with few or no game elements, casting doubt on the effectiveness of gamification for the development of social skills.

Key Takeaway

The results suggest that VR training programs can be effective for developing social skills.

Read More (paywall)

Howard, M.C. & Gutworth, M. B. (2020). A meta-analysis of virtual reality training programs for social skill development. Computers & Education, 144.

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