VEMI Lab Member Awarded Competitive Undergraduate Research Fellowship

The VEMI Lab is proud to announce that one of its members, Scott Richards, is the recipient of a competitive Academic Year Research and Creative Activities Fellowship for the 2015-2016 academic year. Scott, a computer science major and U.S. Army veteran, is interested in the use of virtual reality exposure therapy as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, commonly referred to as PTSD. His abstract is as follows:

As a veteran, I have seen first-hand the effect that Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) can have on an individual. One of the most efficient ways for treating PTSD is the use of prolonged-exposure therapy in which the client gradually recalls traumatic memories in a controlled environment. Organizations such as the U.S. military have already begun to use virtual reality (VR) technology to treat PTSD; however, its full potential remains unrealized as scenarios are typically pre-built and fall short of an accurate representation of real-world environments. This research is intended to create a broadly applicable package of immersive virtual assets such as sounds, objects, and spatial effects, which can be used by clients to easily generate a realistic, immersive environment tailored to an individual’s experience. Survey research throughout all stages of development will evaluate the level of realism and immersion as well as ease of use for those with no VR experience.

We look forward to sharing more about Scott’s research as it progresses!


The full list of 2015-2016 CUGR fellowship awardees can be found here.