Deficient gaze pattern during virtual multiparty conversation in patients with schizophrenia

Kiwan Han, Jungeun Shin, Sang Young Yoon, Dong Pyo Jang, Jae Jin Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Virtual reality has been used to measure abnormal social characteristics, particularly in one-to-one situations. In real life, however, conversations with multiple companions are common and more complicated than two-party conversations. In this study, we explored the features of social behaviors in patients with schizophrenia during virtual multiparty conversations. Twenty-three patients with schizophrenia and 22 healthy controls performed the virtual three-party conversation task, which included leading and aiding avatars, positive- and negative-emotion-laden situations, and listening and speaking phases. Patients showed a significant negative correlation in the listening phase between the amount of gaze on the between-avatar space and reasoning ability, and demonstrated increased gaze on the between-avatar space in the speaking phase that was uncorrelated with attentional ability. These results suggest that patients with schizophrenia have active avoidance of eye contact during three-party conversations. Virtual reality may provide a useful way to measure abnormal social characteristics during multiparty conversations in schizophrenia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-66
Number of pages7
JournalComputers in Biology and Medicine
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jun 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This study was supported by a National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korean Government (MEST; No. 2011-0015859 ) and by a faculty research grant from Yonsei University College of Medicine for 2013 [ 6-2013-0105 ].

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Health Informatics


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