Digital Measures Against Risky Behavior in Traffic: - Virtual Simulation of a Traffic Accident
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Adolescents are significantly overrepresented in traffic accidents. In fact, traffic accidents are the most frequent cause of death among them. Therefore, the overall purpose of this research project is to contribute in the strive towards a transport system with no lost lives. More specifically, it aims explore how technology can persuade adolescents to avoid risky behavior in traffic. Additionally, to obtain some guidelines for how such technology should be designed.Three different medias were evaluated to accomplish these goals: an Oculus Rift simulation of a traffic accident (created particularly for this research project), a traffic safety campaign video, and an educational computer game called Real Life Auto. Two experiments were conducted. Due to the close relation between presence and persuasion, the first experiment was a presence test. This test measured presence and immersion in the Oculus Rift simulation to review the feasibility of designing such simulations for persuasive purposes. The second experiment aimed to investigate whether any of the medias could persuade adolescents to avoid risky behavior in traffic. Furthermore, to reveal which media was considered the most persuasive. Lastly, to discover factors having a positive or negative impact on behavior change. The results showed that the simulation produced a high level of presence, such that it gave an uncomfortable feeling connected to traffic accidents. Hence, the simulation was evaluated as suitable for persuasive purposes, which shows that it is possible to create such simulations. Furthermore, it was considered to the most powerful media among all three. On the other hand, the campaign video was not viewed as particularly influential due to the lack of realism and the exaggeration. Additionally, Real Life Auto was evaluated as less persuasive due to educational content unsuited for the target users.