Virtual reality (VR) training programs are useful for workplace training because they allow for material to be presented in a controlled digital environment. However, a common issue with VR training programs is distraction caused by seductive details: graphics and other elements that are interesting and attention-grabbing but not relevant to the instruction.
Pre-training programs can help curtail these distractions and maximize learning by providing assistance before the simulation. Specifically, researchers have found that attentional advice pre-training programs are the most effective to counteract the negative effects of seductive details in VR training programs. This type of pre-training directs attention toward specific aspects of the learning program and focuses learners’ attention on instructional materials rather than seductive details. (Thanks to our intern Kelley for her contributions to this summary!)
Practitioners can apply attentional advice interventions before introducing a VR training program to reduce the possibility of distraction. We’d also add that, as a general rule, instructional designers should aim to limit the inclusion of seductive details when creating training programs of any kind.
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Howard, M. C., & Lee, J. (2020). Pre‐training interventions to counteract seductive details in virtual reality training programs. Human Resource Development Quarterly, 31(1), 13–29.
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