Investigating the Role of Goals and Environmental Structure on Memory for Distance and Time in Virtual Environments

  • Angie Johnson
  • Kenny R. Coventry
  • Emine M. Thompson
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 6222)


Individuals rarely walk in an environment without a purpose. However, the influence of goals on the development of ‘cognitive maps’, has largely been ignored. The results of two experiments are reported that investigated the role of both goals and environmental structures on memory for distance and time in Virtual Reality (VR) environments. Experiment 1 compared the effect of goals varying in urgency and desirability on memory for distance and time in VR environments with and without turns. Striking effects of goals were found for memory for distance and time in both environments. Experiment 2 examined the origins of these goal effects through the use of physiological measurement and mood scales. Results show that goals influence distance estimation as a function of the degree of urgency experienced in situ, and not as a function of overall mood state or arousal on the estimation process.


Cognitive Maps Virtual Reality Goals distance and time perception 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Angie Johnson
    • 1
  • Kenny R. Coventry
    • 1
  • Emine M. Thompson
    • 2
  1. 1.Cognition and Communication Research CentreNorthumbria UniversityUK
  2. 2.Built Environment Visualisation CentreNorthumbria UniversityUK

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