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When will Immersive Virtual Reality have its day? Challenges to IVR adoption in the home as exposed in studies with teenagers, parents and experts

Hall, Lynne; Paracha, Samiullah; Mitsche, Nicole; Flint, Tom; Stewart, Fiona; MacFarlane, Kate; Hagan-Green, Gillian

Authors

Lynne Hall

Samiullah Paracha

Nicole Mitsche

Kate MacFarlane

Gillian Hagan-Green



Abstract

In response to the pandemic, many countries have had multiple lockdowns punctuated by partial freedoms limiting physically being together. In 2020-21, during the COVID-19 pandemic parents were stressed and exhausted by the challenges of work, home schooling and barriers to typical childcare arrangements. Children were missing one another, their social lives and the variety of experiences that the world beyond the home brings. Immersive Virtual Reality (IVR) offers tried and tested ways to enable children to maintain beyond-household family activities and dynamics. However, it is not viewed as a solution. Instead, as demonstrated through a multiple method study involving a Rapid Evidence Assessment; workshops with 91 teenagers; interviews with 15 experts; a Delphi study with 21 experts; 402 parent questionnaires pre-pandemic; 232 parent questionnaires during the pandemic; and longitudinal interviews with 13 parents during the first UK lockdown in 2020, IVR is not viewed as having value in the home beyond gaming. Results highlight limited consideration of IVR as a way to enhance family life or the home, with a lack of evidence and direction from current research, innovation and policy. The paper empirically demonstrates that experts, teenagers and parents have limited expectations for VR. Further, with parental resistance to adoption and a lack of ideas or innovations in how Immersive Virtual Reality could be used, the likelihood of VR-headset adoption remains low as does its potential as a means of educating, entertaining and socially engaging children and teenagers.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 13, 2021
Online Publication Date Nov 22, 2021
Publication Date 2022
Deposit Date Nov 25, 2021
Publicly Available Date Nov 25, 2021
Print ISSN 1054-7460
Publisher MIT Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 28
Pages 169-201
DOI https://doi.org/10.1162/pres_a_00347
Public URL http://researchrepository.napier.ac.uk/Output/2823027

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