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Authors Kotranza A, Lok B, Deladisma A, Pugh CM, Lind DS
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Journal IEEE Trans Vis Comput Graph Volume: 15 Issue: 3 Pages: 369-82
Publish Date 2009 May-Jun
PubMed ID 19282545

This paper presents Mixed Reality Humans (MRHs), a new type of embodied agent enabling touch-driven communication. Affording touch between human and agent allows MRHs to simulate interpersonal scenarios in which touch is crucial. Two studies provide initial evaluation of user behavior with a MRH patient and the usability and acceptability of a MRH patient for practice and evaluation of medical students’ clinical skills. In Study I (n=8) it was observed that students treated MRHs as social actors more than students in prior interactions with virtual human patients (n=27), and used interpersonal touch to comfort and reassure the MRH patient similarly to prior interactions with human patients (n=76). In the within-subjects Study II (n=11), medical students performed a clinical breast exam on each of a MRH and human patient. Participants performed equivalent exams with the MRH and human patients, demonstrating the usability of MRHs to evaluate students’ exam skills. The acceptability of the MRH patient for practicing exam skills was high as students rated the experience as believable and educationally beneficial. Acceptability was improved from Study I to Study II due to an increase in the MRH’s visual realism, demonstrating that visual realism is critical for simulation of specific interpersonal scenarios. Copyright © 2017 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System