Date of Award

12-2010

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Applied Psychology

Advisor

Brooks, Johnell O

Committee Member

Pagano , Christopher

Committee Member

Gugerty , Leo

Abstract

Particularly in the health and rehabilitation sector where cost and space are constraints, practitioners need smaller driving simulators. Because these small-footprint driving simulators have a limited projected field of view (PFOV) it is desirable to extend the virtual or geometric field of view (GFOV) beyond that natively afforded by the PFOV. Changing the PFOV/GFOV ratio has been shown to alter perceived speed. In order for driving simulation to produce realistic experiences, drivers‟ perception of speed should correspond with real world experiences. The purpose of the current research was to better understand the relationship between speed perception and the GFOV/PFOV ratio in a way that would be useful to simulation practitioners using a small-footprint driving simulator. Using the DS-250, a small-footprint simulator, participants performed a speed matching task using six different GFOV conditions while the PFOV was held constant. Target speeds were presented in three appropriate simulated environments: 25mph in a residential area, 45mph in a commercial area, and 65mph on a freeway. In general, perceived speed was found to decrease with larger GFOVs. However, no GFOV tested produced accurate speed perception; on average, all participants underestimated their speeds using all GFOVs. A regression was used to estimate at which GFOV average error in speed production would approach zero. Subjective data regarding participant strategy, perceived accuracy, and their awareness of different GFOV conditions were also collected.

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