Elevating Stress Levels - Exploring Multimodality for Stress Induction in VR

Weiß, Sebastian and Kimmel, Simon and Withöft, Ani and Jung, Frederike and Boll, Susanne CJ and Heuten, Wilko
Proceedings of Mensch Und Computer 2022
Simulation training in Virtual Reality (VR) has gained attraction in recent years. With its broad application possibilities and implicit safety for users, simulation-based training may be imagined for safety-critical situations and exposure therapy. Beyond visual and auditory representation of the environment and stressors, upcoming hardware supports olfactory and haptic feedback. To examine the benefits of these technological advances in stress training, we present a Wizard of Oz pilot study (N=12). Therein, a bimodal presentation of the scenario `being stuck in an elevator' was compared to a multimodal one. For the comparison, we measured qualitative feedback, the iGroup presence questionnaire scores, and physiological stress reactions by recording changes in cardiac and pulmonary activity. Results show trends for moderately more pronounced stress levels and perceived presence for the multimodal presentation. Thus, we argue that multimodal stress induction may better simulate hazardous situations in stress training.
September / 2022
Association for Computing Machinery
MuC '22