After the VR experience, we conducted a semi-structured interview to obtain detailed insights from the users’ perspective. The interview consisted of the following themes: 1) Overall evaluation of system usability and user experience, 2) User’s perception of the information spaces in VR, and 3) Description of their mental models for hyperspatial navigation. Below lists some of the key interview questions:
We carried out a structured, qualitative data analysis to summarize and interpret the interview data we collected. The qualitative user data was transcribed by the transcription service otter.ai after removing all personally identifiable information and then systematically analyzed using thematic analysis and open coding method. The resulting observation notes, interviews, and research data were fully transcribed and anonymized by the researcher who conducted the session. Data were analyzed thematically to identify patterns of information using the Atlas.ti analysis software.
We collected and analyzed user-generated drawings, with the primary goal being the identification and analysis of key mental models. We reminded the participant to state their rationale aloud while drawing and asked the participant for clarifications of their rationales. A qualitative coding scheme was developed using the method previously described. One major contribution of this research is that it leverages mental models into the design process to analyze how users perceive the system, thereby integrating the findings into optimizing hyperspatial navigation in VR.