With the ongoing development of simulation technology, classic barriers to social interactions are beginning to be dismantled. One such exchange is encapsulated within education—instructors can use simulations to make difficult topics more manageable and accessible to students. Within simulations that include virtual humans, however, there are important factors to consider. Participants playing in virtual environments will act in a way that is consistent with their real-world behaviors—including their implicit biases. The current study seeks to determine the impact of virtual humans’ skin tone on participants’ behaviors when applying engineering concepts to simulated projects. Within a comparable study focused on a medical training simulation, significantly more errors and delays were made when working for the benefit of dark-skinned patients in a virtual context. In the current study, participants were given a choose-your-own-adventure style game in which they constructed simulated bridges for either a light- ordark-skinned community, and the number of errors and time taken for each decision was tracked. Results are expected to be consistent with previous study, indicating a higher number of errors and less time taken for each decision, although these results may be attenuated by a
lack of time pressure and urgency to the given situations. If these expected results hold, there may be implications for both undergraduate engineering curriculum and real-world engineering endeavors.
- 2020-04-25 12:00:19
- 2021-08-11 04:09:57
- 1 year 5 months ago