HMD-Based VR Tool for Traffic Psychological Examination: Conceptualization and Design Proposition
In the present theoretical paper, the current body of knowledge regarding the use of wearable virtual reality (VR) technologies for traffic psychological examination (TPE) is introduced, critically discussed and a specific application is suggested. The combination of wearable head-mounted displays for VR with an interactive and cost-effective haptic driving interface is emphasized as a valid and viable platform for a driving skills psychological assessment, which is in several aspects superior to standard TPE as well as driving simulators. For this purpose, existing psychological examination methods and psychological phenomena relevant in the process of driving are discussed together with VR technology’s properties and options. Special focus is dedicated to situation awareness as a crucial, but currently hardly measurable construct, where VR in combination with embedded eye-tracking (ET) technology represents a promising solution. Furthermore, the suitability and possibilities of these VR tools for valid traffic psychological examination are analyzed and discussed. Additionally, potentially desirable measures for driving assessment based on recent advances of VR are outlined and practical applications are suggested. The aim of this article is to bring together recent advances in TPE, VR and ET; revise previous relevant studies in the field; and to propose concept of the cost effective, mobile and expandable HMD-based driving simulator, which can be suitable for an ecologically valid driving assessment and follow-up TPE in common practice.