Human behavior is subjective: we base our action and reaction on our experiences and understanding of the situation we are presented with. So, how do you train real-life experiences into a person without subjecting the individual to risk, engage and retain attentiveness during a course of study, or prepare them for high stress and volatile scenarios? Everyone knows that new skills require practice. But what if the skill is heart surgery? And what if you need to be able to strategize a response to an enemy ambush on the fly?
Simulations have been part of professional and military training as long as anyone can remember, but it’s never been easy or cheap to set them up for the sake of practice. VR training options offer controlled, easily generated environments that allow for the repetition students need to master a new skill or process.
What we hope to achieve
The goal here is to teach appropriate response to a given scenario, that is the essence of all training. VR experiences can build extreme environments and situations, allowing you to test and learn without severe consequences. This not only eliminates risk, liability, and injury; it also allows you to more easily train and master procedures, so, when the time comes, they’re prepared for the real deal. With greater safety, comes fewer costs.
But VR also offers a vision into a world of what could be. For this reason, VR is poised for a tremendous impact on a global scale in the rehabilitation and therapeutic industries. Gamers have enjoyed the use of avatars for years, but neurologists are now exploring the therapeutic benefits of virtual bodies.
Your emotional and physiological response to stimuli in virtual reality is closer to what you would experience in real life situations. This finding is most strongly supported by decades of research showing that VR can be used to treat phobia disorders and post-traumatic stress disorder. For example, during a VR experience, you could be repeatedly exposed to a stressful stimulus in safe conditions. Over time, this sort of experience reduces your stress or fear response to that stimulus. Because the experience is virtual, you can be exposed to varying levels of intensity of the experience.
This is important because you would become gradually accustomed to stronger stimuli. Any stressful situation can be turned into a safe VR experience—from seeing a spider to dealing with a fire outbreak to handling angry customers that unknowingly broke their new iPhone and blame you (Just saying).
Just a few
These are just a few of the features that make VR training so much better than regular old instructional based training. As the technology evolves, we will see more immersive training solutions emerge that will allow people to train faster, better and cheaper than ever before, giving them both the psychological and emotional readiness to face combative or stressful situations.