The Lived Experience of Virtual Environments: A Phenomenological Study


Here is the abstrack and link to my PhD with the topic “The Lived Experience of Virtual Environments: A Phenomenological Study”, in addition to relevant other publications related to the research project that it was part of (The nDiVE Project):

Thesis PDF at Curtin university espace:

Curtin espace Abstract:
This is study of the experience of virtual environments (VE) in the context of safety training. Research involves participants from two companies who use VEs for safety training in hazardous work environments. The research approach is phenomenology. The key findings of the study show how the users actively form the VE experience. These insights will be useful for VE research and development.

Other publications:

Teras, M. Reiners, T., Coldham, G., & Wood L. C. (2016). nDiVE: Gamified Virtual Reality Environment for Logistics and Supply Chain Management Training. In ACM CHI EA ’16: Proceedings of the 2016 CHI Conference Extended Abstracts on Human Factors in Computing Systems. San Jose, CA, USA, 7–12 May 2016. DOI:

Teras, M., Teras, H., & Reiners, T. (2015). The Lived Experience of an Authentic Context in Virtual Environments: First Steps of a Descriptive Phenomenological Analysis in a Safety Training Setting. ACIS 2015, The 26th Australasian Conference on Information Systems, Adelaide, South Australia, 1–4 December 2015.

Teräs, H., Teräs, M., & Reiners, T. (2014). Giving virtual world learning a pedagogical boost with a gamified authentic learning design. In Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Media and Technology 2014 (pp. 1688-1693). Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education (AACE).

Reiners, T., Teräs, H., Chang, V., Wood, L. C., Gregory, S., Gibson, D., Petter , N., & Teräs, M. (2014). Authentic, immersive, and emotional experience in virtual learning environments: The fear of dying as an important learning experience in a simulation. In Transformative, innovative and engaging. Proceedings of the 23rd Annual Teaching Learning Forum, 30-31 January 2014. Perth: The University of Western Australia.


Phenomenology and User Experience of Public Restrooms

roll of money

“roll of money” by frankieleon

In the context of a restroom, the intention of the user is to wipe clean without breaking paper with a finger.

The intention of the developer and administrator of a restroom is to save money by creating and distributing thin and easily breakable paper.

Which perspective to the same context wins in the end, the user’s who interacts in the situation or the administrator’s?

It is in such drastically simple and inconvenient everyday matters where we refuse to see into the actual user experience, and where we end up breaking it.

Descriptive phenomenology and collecting data with interviews: articles and book chapters

A couple of sources I found useful at least to me when trying to understand how collecting data with interviews work for descriptive phenomenology. Surprisingly, not an exhaustive list on the matter. If you have other good ones, do share them in the comments below. I’ll be happy to hear about them.

Bevan, M. T. (2014). A method of phenomenological interviewing. Qualitative Health Research, 24(1), 136–44. doi:10.1177/1049732313519710

Cilsiz, S. (2011). A phenomenological approach to experiences with technology: current state, promise, and future directions for research. Educational Technology Research & Development, 59(4), 487–510. doi:10.1007/s11423-010-9173-2

Colaizzi, P. F. (1978). Psychological research as the phenomenologist views it. In R. S. Valle & M. King (Eds.), Existential-phenomenological alternatives for psychology (pp. 48–71). New York: Oxford University Press.

Englander, M. (2012). The Interview: Data Collection in Descriptive Phenomenological Human Scientific Research. Journal of Phenomenological Psychology, 43(1), 13–35. doi:10.1163/156916212X632943

Finlay, L. (2008). A Dance Between the Reduction and Reflexivity: Explicating the “Phenomenological Psychological Attitude”. Journal of Humanistic Psychology, 39, 1–32. doi:10.1163/156916208X311601

Kvale, S. (1994). Ten standard Objections to Qualitative Research Interviews. Journal of Phenomenological Psychology, 25(2), 147–173. doi:10.1163/156916294X00016

Langdridge, D. (2007). Phenomenological Psychology: Theory, Research and Method. Harlow: Pearson Education.

Moustakas, C. (1994). Phenomenological research methods. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. (Especially Chapter 6. Methods and procedures for conducting human science research.)

Polkinghorne, D. E. (2005). Language and Meaning: Data Collection in Qualitative Research. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 52(2), 137–145.