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VR to Solve Personal Problems

By University of Barcelona

August 1, 2019

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Researchers in Spain at the University of Barcelona (UB), the August Pi i Sunyer Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBAPS), and Virtual BodyWorks, a spin-off of both institutions and the Catalan Institution for Research and Advanced Studies (ICREA),  used immersive virtual reality (VR) to study the effects of people talking to themselves as if they were another person.

The team found that conversation with oneself helps improve mood, compared to just talking about your problems in a virtual conversation with pre-scripted comments.

The researchers compared one group who spoke to themselves first embodied as the VR participant, and then body-swapping into a virtual Sigmund Freud; another group  spoke to the virtual Freud, who responded with pre-scripted questions and comments.

Said UB researcher Mel Slater, "We found that those in the body swapping group got better knowledge, understanding, control, and new ideas about their problem compared to the control group (no body swapping)."

From University of Barcelona
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Abstracts Copyright © 2019 SmithBucklin, Washington, DC, USA

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