Feasibility of a virtual reality-based interactive feedback program for modifying dysfunctional communication: A preliminary study

Junhyung Kim, Young Hoon Jung, Yu Bin Shin, Min Kyeong Kim, Hyojung Eom, Eunjoo Kim, Joohan Kim, Jae Jin Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Functional communication is vital in many areas of daily life, and modifying dysfunctional communication has been emphasized in various social areas, including family and school. The present preliminary study addressed the feasibility of a virtual reality (VR)-based interactive feedback program for the modification of dysfunctional communication. Methods: Thirty-seven healthy young males completed psychological assessments associated with functional communication and participated in the VR-based program, consisting of the three tasks of 'exploring the communication style,' 'practicing functional communication,' and 'expressing empathy.' Behavioral parameters were recorded based on the participants' choices among available options and the visual analog scale scores that resulted in responses to questions in the tasks. Results: Participants completed the program without dropping-out and reported 10.76 (SD, 9.66) in the Simulator Sickness Questionnaire and 106.97 (SD, 16.66) in the Presence Questionnaire. In exploring the communication style, there was no difference between the dysfunction level-with family and dysfunction level-with a friend, but only the dysfunction level-with family showed significant correlations with the level of communication with parents. In practicing functional communication, the communication scores with the placating, blaming, and computing styles significantly increased according to the repetition of trials. In expressing empathy, the empathetic feeling score was negatively correlated with the perspective-taking score, whereas the emotional intensity score was positively correlated with the level of differentiation of the self. Conclusion: These results suggest that the program may have a tolerable level of cybersickness, an adequate level of presence, an improvement in the behavioral parameters that may reflect the important aspects of communication, and a proper reflection of psychological states or interpersonal characteristics. The use of this program can be an important starting point for the development of a more convenient method for delivering VR programs designed to modify dysfunctional communication, which can further increase computerized dissemination.

Original languageEnglish
Article number50
JournalBMC psychology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2020 May 14

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© 2020 The Author(s).

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Psychology


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