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Evaluating an intervention to reduce risky driving behaviours: Taking the fear out of Virtual Reality

Evaluating an intervention to reduce risky driving behaviours: Taking the fear out of Virtual Reality
Evaluating an intervention to reduce risky driving behaviours: Taking the fear out of Virtual Reality

Educational programs are the most common type of intervention to reduce risky driving behavior. Their success, however, depends on the content of the material used and the mode of delivery. In the present study, we examined the impact of fear versus positively framed road safety films and traditional technologies (2D) versus emerging technologies (VR) on young drivers’ self-reported risky driving behaviors. One hundred and forty-six university students completed a similar set of questionnaires pre-intervention and post-intervention, two weeks later. In addition, they were randomly assigned to one of the four experimental conditions (VR vs. 2D; positive vs. negative). In the VR conditions, the film was presented using an HTC VIVE Virtual Reality headset. In the 2D conditions, the film was presented on a computer screen. Measures evaluating attitudes toward risky driving behavior were completed at both time frames, questions regarding the participants' emotional arousal were asked at pre-intervention as a manipulation check, and questions regarding willingness to take risks in potentially dangerous driving situations were asked at follow-up. The findings indicate that the positively framed films significantly decreased self-reported risky driving behaviors in both modalities, but especially when viewed in VR format. In contrast, the fear appeal film, when shown in VR, failed to reduce risky driving behaviors, and in fact, increased young drivers’ self-reported risky driving behaviors. Theoretical frameworks regarding the strengths and weaknesses of fear appeals and positively framed appeals are discussed to aid future research to reduce risky driving. Practical implications on the future usage of VR are also considered.

Fear appeals, positively framed appeals, risky driving, virtual reality, young drivers
0272-4332
Cutello, Clara
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Gummerum, Michaela
321a449f-cb87-4574-8ee8-98c85c967e27
Hanoch, Yaniv
3cf08e80-8bda-4d3b-af1c-46c858aa9f39
Hellier, Elizabeth
c32ec5ca-6b9d-4b07-8d95-47bb53cb6d47
Cutello, Clara
7b81f632-5bb2-4f8c-9242-77f697592d3c
Gummerum, Michaela
321a449f-cb87-4574-8ee8-98c85c967e27
Hanoch, Yaniv
3cf08e80-8bda-4d3b-af1c-46c858aa9f39
Hellier, Elizabeth
c32ec5ca-6b9d-4b07-8d95-47bb53cb6d47

Cutello, Clara, Gummerum, Michaela, Hanoch, Yaniv and Hellier, Elizabeth (2020) Evaluating an intervention to reduce risky driving behaviours: Taking the fear out of Virtual Reality. Risk Analysis. (doi:10.1111/risa.13643).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Educational programs are the most common type of intervention to reduce risky driving behavior. Their success, however, depends on the content of the material used and the mode of delivery. In the present study, we examined the impact of fear versus positively framed road safety films and traditional technologies (2D) versus emerging technologies (VR) on young drivers’ self-reported risky driving behaviors. One hundred and forty-six university students completed a similar set of questionnaires pre-intervention and post-intervention, two weeks later. In addition, they were randomly assigned to one of the four experimental conditions (VR vs. 2D; positive vs. negative). In the VR conditions, the film was presented using an HTC VIVE Virtual Reality headset. In the 2D conditions, the film was presented on a computer screen. Measures evaluating attitudes toward risky driving behavior were completed at both time frames, questions regarding the participants' emotional arousal were asked at pre-intervention as a manipulation check, and questions regarding willingness to take risks in potentially dangerous driving situations were asked at follow-up. The findings indicate that the positively framed films significantly decreased self-reported risky driving behaviors in both modalities, but especially when viewed in VR format. In contrast, the fear appeal film, when shown in VR, failed to reduce risky driving behaviors, and in fact, increased young drivers’ self-reported risky driving behaviors. Theoretical frameworks regarding the strengths and weaknesses of fear appeals and positively framed appeals are discussed to aid future research to reduce risky driving. Practical implications on the future usage of VR are also considered.

Text
Evaluating safe driving interventions-Revised-1 - Accepted Manuscript
Restricted to Repository staff only until 20 November 2022.
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More information

Accepted/In Press date: 12 November 2020
e-pub ahead of print date: 20 November 2020
Keywords: Fear appeals, positively framed appeals, risky driving, virtual reality, young drivers

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 445409
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/445409
ISSN: 0272-4332
PURE UUID: d121180a-5703-463e-91a9-9e3472c8e6a7
ORCID for Yaniv Hanoch: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0001-9453-4588

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Date deposited: 08 Dec 2020 17:30
Last modified: 28 Apr 2022 02:28

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Contributors

Author: Clara Cutello
Author: Michaela Gummerum
Author: Yaniv Hanoch ORCID iD
Author: Elizabeth Hellier

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