Pilot study for assessing the behaviors of patients with schizophrenia towards a virtual avatar

Jeonghun Ku, Hee Jeong Jang, Kwang Uk Kim, Sung Hyouk Park, Jae-Jin Kim, Chan Hyung Kim, Sang Won Nam, In Young Kim, Sun I. Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This study examined whether a virtual avatar could be perceived as a real human by patients with mental disease, especially schizophrenia, as well as whether a virtual avatar could be applied to acquiring patients' behavior characteristics in a short conversation situation. The virtual avatar has been used for various applications which need to communicate with other person or to train or educate by showing humanlike behavior. Recently, many researches have shown that the virtual avatar technology has been enhanced and the avatar could be perceived like real human. A virtual avatar, standing in a virtual room, was designed for this study. Tasks to approach, initiate a talk, and answer to avatar's questions was assigned to the 11 patients with schizophrenia. As behavioral parameters in the virtual environment, the interpersonal distance and the verbal response time were acquired. In addition, the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) for patients was administered in order to investigate the relationship between patients' symptomatic characteristics and behavior parameters. The interpersonal distance was negatively correlated with the negative syndrome scale, a sub-scale of PANSS, which is consistent with previous research reporting the relationship between interpersonal distance and a real person's image. The verbal response time, however, was not correlated with any other subscale of PANSS. After analyzing subitems of the negative syndrome of PANSS, two positive correlations were found: one was with blunted affect and the other was with poor rapport. We concluded that the virtual avatar could be perceived as a real human by schizophrenic patients and the avatar could draw the schizophrenic patients' behavior characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)531-539
Number of pages9
JournalCyberpsychology and Behavior
Volume9
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Oct 1

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schizophrenia
Schizophrenia
Virtual reality
Reaction Time
human being
conversation
Mentally Ill Persons
Disease
Research
Technology
time

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Communication
  • Applied Psychology
  • Human-Computer Interaction

Cite this

Ku, Jeonghun ; Jang, Hee Jeong ; Kim, Kwang Uk ; Park, Sung Hyouk ; Kim, Jae-Jin ; Kim, Chan Hyung ; Nam, Sang Won ; Kim, In Young ; Kim, Sun I. / Pilot study for assessing the behaviors of patients with schizophrenia towards a virtual avatar. In: Cyberpsychology and Behavior. 2006 ; Vol. 9, No. 5. pp. 531-539.
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Pilot study for assessing the behaviors of patients with schizophrenia towards a virtual avatar. / Ku, Jeonghun; Jang, Hee Jeong; Kim, Kwang Uk; Park, Sung Hyouk; Kim, Jae-Jin; Kim, Chan Hyung; Nam, Sang Won; Kim, In Young; Kim, Sun I.

In: Cyberpsychology and Behavior, Vol. 9, No. 5, 01.10.2006, p. 531-539.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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