Processing Racial Stereotypes in Virtual Reality: An Exploratory Study Using Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS)

Gyoung Kim, Noah Buntain, Leanne M Hirshfield, Mark R. Costa, Tamara Makana Chock

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

This within-subjects exploratory study examined users’ (N = 13) neurological responses to a racially-charged VR experience. The goals of the study are (1) to test a new method of assessing neural activity while users are experiencing VR using non-invasive functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) device and VR headset, and (2) to compare activation in areas of the pre-frontal cortex that have been found to be associated with prejudice and stereotyping (specifically the mPFC and lPFC) while participants are exposed to a racially-charged VR experience vs. a non-racially charged VR experience. There were no significant differences in mPFC activity between the two types of VR experiences suggesting no differences in empathy or “humanizing” for the characters. However, in the racially charged experience, significantly greater activation in the right lPFC was found which could indicate negative stereotype activation. In addition, significantly greater activation in the left lPFC occurred in the racially-charged VR experience which could indicate stereotype inhibition or regulation of negative stereotypes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAugmented Cognition - 13th International Conference, AC 2019, Held as Part of the 21st HCI International Conference, HCII 2019, Proceedings
EditorsDylan D. Schmorrow, Cali M. Fidopiastis
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Pages407-417
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print)9783030224189
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2019
Event13th International Conference on Augmented Cognition, AC 2019, held as part of the 21st International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction, HCI International 2019 - Orlando, United States
Duration: Jul 26 2019Jul 31 2019

Publication series

NameLecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics)
Volume11580 LNAI
ISSN (Print)0302-9743
ISSN (Electronic)1611-3349

Conference

Conference13th International Conference on Augmented Cognition, AC 2019, held as part of the 21st International Conference on Human-Computer Interaction, HCI International 2019
CountryUnited States
CityOrlando
Period7/26/197/31/19

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Keywords

  • Brain measurement in social neuroscience
  • Racial prejudice
  • Virtual reality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computer Science(all)

Cite this

Kim, G., Buntain, N., Hirshfield, L. M., Costa, M. R., & Chock, T. M. (2019). Processing Racial Stereotypes in Virtual Reality: An Exploratory Study Using Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS). In D. D. Schmorrow, & C. M. Fidopiastis (Eds.), Augmented Cognition - 13th International Conference, AC 2019, Held as Part of the 21st HCI International Conference, HCII 2019, Proceedings (pp. 407-417). (Lecture Notes in Computer Science (including subseries Lecture Notes in Artificial Intelligence and Lecture Notes in Bioinformatics); Vol. 11580 LNAI). Springer Verlag. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-22419-6_29