Training in Virtual and Real Environments

Authors: Kenyon, R., Afenya, M.

Publication: Annals of Biomedical Engineering: Starkfest Conference Proceedings, vol 23, Biomedical Engineering Society, pp. 445-455


Transfer of training between real and virtual environments was examined using a pick-and-place task with two different difficulty levels. The task was to minimize the time to move cans from one color coded location in the first row to the same color coded location in the back row and then to reverse the process. In the first task, the front and back disk colors were aligned and in the second disk order, the front and back disk colors were randomly placed on the table. Subjects trained in one environment were then tested in the other and their performance compared with that of subjects being trained in that environment. Some virtual world trained subjects showed small but significant improvement in performance compared to the untrained subjects for the real world task for both disk arrangements. The differences in performance between the two groups decreased with trial number until no difference was seen at the end of the sessions. None of the real world trained subjects showed any significant improvement when performing the task in the virtual world compared to the untrained subjects. These results suggest that transfer-of-training from virtual to real world tasks can take place under certain conditions.

Date: January 1, 1995
Task Environment with Superimposed Head and Hand Position - M. Afenya, EVL

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