Virtual Environments Group

Our group designs, builds and evaluates virtual environments, 3D interaction techniques, and virtual entities with a human centered computing perspective. Our research thrusts span the areas of perception-action, education and training, simulation based visualization, simulations as test beds for the study of human behavior, virtual humans and crowds, avatars, and novel interaction techniques in Extended Realities (VR, AR, MR).

VR Headset

Publication Highlight

The Effects of Auditory, Visual, and Cognitive Distractions on Cybersickness in Virtual Reality

Rohith Venkatakrishnan, Roshan Venkatakrishnan, Balagopal Raveendranath, Dawn M Sarno, Andrew C Robb, Wen-Chieh Lin, Sabarish V Babu (2023)

Cybersickness (CS) is one of the challenges that has hindered the widespread adoption of Virtual Reality (VR). Consequently, researchers continue to explore novel means to mitigate the undesirable effects associated with this affliction, one that may require a combination of remedies as opposed to a solitary stratagem. Inspired by research probing into the use of distractions as a means to control pain, we investigated the efficacy of this countermeasure against CS, studying how the introduction of temporally time-gated distractions affects this malady during a virtual experience featuring active exploration. Downstream of this, we discuss how other aspects of the VR experience are affected by this intervention. We discuss the results of a between-subjects study manipulating the presence, sensory modality, and nature of periodic and short-lived (5-12 seconds) distractor stimuli across 4 experimental conditions: (1) no-distractors (ND); (2) auditory distractors (AD); (3) visual distractors (VD); (4) cognitive distractors (CD). Two of these conditions (VD and AD) formed a yoked control design wherein every matched pair of ‘seers’ and ‘hearers’ was periodically exposed...

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Our work is funded through grants provided by the National Science Foundation and through the support of Clemson University. For more information about our monetary awards please see our "About" page.

Tiger Paw

Our Lab

These are photos of our lab.

McAdams Hall

Our building

Room 111C

Our lab

Wide Area Tracking Space

For projects that require extra room

Small Area Tracking Space

Separated spaces for individual projects

VR Headset and Tracker

Helmet with tracker is used for tracking head-motion without the HMD

Lab Members

Members of our lab on picture day 2022

Lab Lunch Spring 2022

Spring lab lunch 2022

Lab Lunch December 2022

December lab lunch 2022


These are some of our ongoing projects.

  • We studied how perception-action coordination changed as VR users gain experience in virtual environments over time. This work highlights the need for carrying out VR studies over time and the influence that longitudinal calibration can have on spatial perception in long-term VR experiences.

  • This work considers the experience of users in locomotion and navigating desktop VEs when designing navigation aids and studying their effectiveness. Navigation aids that are appropriate for experienced users may actually not provide a suitable level of support for inexperienced users, and solutions that may improve the navigation performance of inexperienced users may not benefit experienced users beyond a certain degree. Our results will benefit the design of VR applications based on the users' capabilities and needs.

  • The mHealth phone application includes a digital human or embodied conversational agent (ECA) interface for reporting health status. It will be used for the remote monitoring of Prisma Health patients who suffer from pulmonary distress or heart failure. Additionally, we will measure the users' subjective impressions towards the embodied conversational agent (ECA) and the system usability.

  • This work attempts at laying a foundation for future investigations that seek to understand and further improve the on-air writing experience in immersive virtual environments. We study the effects of canvas geometry, inking triggers and input modalities on on-air writing performance, outlining guidelines and good practices to abide by when designing such interfaces.

  • Cybersickness, a malady like motion sickness strongly manifests in virtual experiences that involve locomotion. This work attempts to study how cybersickness is affected when secondary tasks have to additionally be performed in VR. We further evaluate whether secondary tasks affect other aspects of the VR experience.

  • End effectors represent the tools with which users perform actions and interact with the virtual world. This work seeks to investigate how end effector representations affect the efficacy of performance in interaction tasks in immersive virtual environments.

  • Focus of this project is to study effects of presence of users' end effectors and sensory modalities on the perception of tangibles in virtual reality (VR). Through this study we are trying to determine if the perception of size of the tracked tangibles are improved by providing the user's hand avatar in the VR environment.

  • Tradeoff between efficiency and accuracy while performing cornering tasks, in a VR environment of randomly arranged maze, is being studied.


New and noteworthy items from our lab.

Paper Acceptance to ACM TAP (July, 2023)

Moloud Nasiri

Moloud recently had her paper titled "Changes in Navigation Over Time: A Comparison of Teleportation and Joystick-based Locomotion" accepted to ACM Transactions on Applied Perception.

Ph.D. Graduation Announcements (July, 2023)

Roshan Venkatakrishnan, Rohith Venkatakrishnan

Congratulations to Roshan and Rohith on passing their dissertation defenses! Roshan and Rohith will graduate from the HCC Ph.D. program this August.

Best Paper Award (April, 2023)

Roshan Venkatakrishnan, Rohith Venkatakrishnan

Roshan and Rohith's paper titled "How Virtual Hand Representations Affect the Perceptions of Dynamic Affordances in Virtual Reality" won a best paper award at IEEE VR 2023. Also, their paper titled "Give Me a Hand: Improving the Effectiveness of Near-field Augmented Reality Interactions By Avatarizing Users' End Effectors" received a best paper honorable mention at the conference.

Contact Us

Questions or comments? Reach out to us!


100 McAdams Hall, Clemson, SC 29671