Mixed Reality Virtual Humans

Standardized human patients are typically used in medical professions as ways for nurses and doctors to explore practitioner-patient communication, diagnoses, and planned treatments.  New affordances in virtual reality provide opportunities for continued and extended training with the use of simulated patients.

RCET researcher have been collaborating with the Virtual Experiences Research Group (VERG) at the University of Florida to study the potential of virtual humans (VH), a life-sized conversation agent projected in 3-dimensional spaces, as means to an effective teaching tool in medical education and communication. Current projects include the development of a virtual interactive simulation for display at Great Lakes Science Center (Cleveland, OH). The goal of the exhibit is to educate visitors with regard to specific health issues such as obesity and melanoma.  By interacting with the simulator, visitors are trained by a virtual doctor and also have the opportunity to assume the physician role and advise a virtual patient.