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Triberti S.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Villani D.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Riva G.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Riva G.,Applied Technology for NeuroPsychology Laboratory
Computers in Human Behavior

Several approaches in technology adoption, such as the Technology Acceptance Model (TAM), ask future users to provide evaluations of technology. Such evaluations are expected to predict actual use behavior. For example, users’ evaluations in terms of perceived usefulness and perceived ease of use are considered meaningful indicators of intention to use the technology, and future usage. However, these approaches still show limited reliability and do not consider other critical aspects, such as situated, unconscious goals and the tendency to perceive related affordances. In order to test the hypothesis that technology evaluation may be influenced by unconscious goals, forty participants were split in two groups. The experimental session included two phases. In the first phase, each group explored a virtual environment that primed a specific goal. In the second phase, participants were asked to evaluate the usefulness and the easiness of use of two versions of the same technology (a mobile devices interface). Results showed that each group evaluated as more useful the version of the technology which featured an affordance related to the respective primed goal. Discussion deals with the possible unconscious influences on attitudes towards technology adoption, and provides operative guidelines to account for them in technology adoption research. © 2016 Elsevier Ltd Source

Triberti S.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Repetto C.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Riva G.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Riva G.,Applied Technology for NeuroPsychology Laboratory
Cyberpsychology, Behavior, and Social Networking

The experience of pain is affected by remarkable psychological factors. The concept of neuromatrix suggests that pain is an amalgam of affect, cognition, and sensation mediated through diverse brain regions. Moreover, the experience of pain appears to be reduced by environmental stimuli that drive attention away from the noxious events. Accordingly, immersion in a computer-generated, three-dimensional virtual environment has been used as an efficient distraction tool in a number of studies on pain management. However, no systematic approaches have explored the psychological factors that influence the effectiveness of virtual reality (VR) as a distraction technology. This review aims to outline the fundamental psychological factors involved in the use of VR to provide pain management. An analysis of the literature revealed some important elements associated with the patients' subjective experience. Eleven studies met the inclusion criteria and were included in the review. The results suggest the importance of different psychological factors in the effectiveness of the analgesic distraction. While sense of presence influence the effectiveness of VR as a distraction tool, anxiety as well as positive emotions directly affect the experience of pain. Future challenges for pain management via VR include adopting properly validated measures to assess psychological factors and using different experimental conditions to better understand their complex effects. © Copyright 2014, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2014. Source

Triberti S.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Villani D.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Riva G.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | Riva G.,Applied Technology for NeuroPsychology Laboratory
Computers in Human Behavior

Over the past 30 years, video games have become an important part of contemporary global entertainment and media. One relevant issue among the possible video game effects on behavior is related to violence and aggression tendencies. The debate on this topic is still open and highlights the importance of considering possible mediating factors, such as moral positioning (e.g., preferences for evil/good characters/choices in video games), empathy, and personality of video gamers. This study aimed to investigate the relationship between moral positioning of video gamers and personality traits, aggression tendencies, and social abilities. 224 players completed an online survey including ad hoc questions about their preferences for evil/good characters and choices in video games and several validated questionnaires to assess their dispositional traits. Results showed that gamers' preferences for playing evil characters were negatively associated with extraversion, agreeableness, and empathy. Aggression was only partially correlated with evil moral positioning; specifically, in terms of physical aggression. Moreover, evil moral positioning in video games did not predict aggressive tendencies, but partially predicted low levels of empathic ability in players. The findings are discussed with reference to a social conception of video game play and to possible implications for the educational context. © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Carelli L.,University of Bergamo | Carelli L.,Applied Technology for NeuroPsychology Laboratory | Rusconi M.L.,University of Bergamo | Scarabelli C.,University of Bergamo | And 3 more authors.
Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation

Background. To go from one place to another, we routinely generate internal representations of surrounding spaces, which can include egocentric (body-centred) and allocentric (world-centred) coordinates, combined into route and survey representations. Recent studies have shown how both egocentric and allocentric representations exist in parallel and are joined to support behaviour according to the task. Our study investigated the transfer from survey (map-like) to route representations in healthy and brain-damaged subjects. The aim was two-fold: first, to understand how this ability could change with age in a sample of healthy participants, aged from 40 to 71 years old; second, to investigate how it is affected after a brain lesion in a 8 patients' sample, with reference to specific neuropsychological frames. Methods. Participants were first required to perform the paper and pencil version of eight mazes, then to translate the map-like paths into egocentric routes, in order to find the right way into equivalent Virtual Reality (VR) mazes. Patients also underwent a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation, including a specific investigation of some topographical orientation components. Results. As regards the healthy sample, we found age-related deterioration in VR task performance. While education level and gender were not found to be related to performance, global cognitive level (Mini Mental State Examination), previous experience with computer and fluidity of navigation into the VR appeared to influence VR task results. Considering the clinical sample, there was a difficulty in performing the VR Maze task; executive functions and visuo-spatial abilities deficits appeared to be more relevant for predicting patients' results. Conclusions. Our study suggests the importance of developing tools aimed at investigating the survey to route transfer ability in both healthy elderly and clinical samples, since this skill seems high cognitive demanding and sensitive to cognitive decline. Human-computer interaction issues should be considered in employing new technologies, such as VR environments, with elderly subjects and neurological patients. © 2011 Carelli et al; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. Source

Fleming T.M.,University of Auckland | de Beurs D.,Netherlands Institute for Health Services Research NIVEL | Khazaal Y.,University of Geneva | Gaggioli A.,Catholic University of the Sacred Heart | And 13 more authors.
Frontiers in Psychiatry

Internet interventions for mental health, including serious games, online programs, and apps, hold promise for increasing access to evidence-based treatments and prevention. Many such interventions have been shown to be effective and acceptable in trials; however, uptake and adherence outside of trials is seldom reported, and where it is, adherence at least, generally appears to be underwhelming. In response, an international Collaboration On Maximizing the impact of E-Therapy and Serious Gaming (COMETS) was formed. In this perspectives' paper, we call for a paradigm shift to increase the impact of internet interventions toward the ultimate goal of improved population mental health. We propose four pillars for change: (1) increased focus on user-centered approaches, including both user-centered design of programs and greater individualization within programs, with the latter perhaps utilizing increased modularization; (2) Increased emphasis on engagement utilizing processes such as gaming, gamification, telepresence, and persuasive technology; (3) Increased collaboration in program development, testing, and data sharing, across both sectors and regions, in order to achieve higher quality, more sustainable outcomes with greater reach; and (4) Rapid testing and implementation, including the measurement of reach, engagement, and effectiveness, and timely implementation. We suggest it is time for researchers, clinicians, developers, and end-users to collaborate on these aspects in order to maximize the impact of e-therapies and serious gaming. © 2016 Fleming, de Beurs, Khazaal, Gaggioli, Riva, Botella, Baños, Aschieri, Bavin, Kleiboer, Merry, Lau and Riper. Source

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