Moments of friction in virtual reality: How feeling histories impact experience

Ty Hollett, Siyuan Luo, Nate Turcotte, Crystal Ramsay, Chris Stubbs, Zac Zidik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


This article examines embodied interaction in a virtual reality learning environment. Studies of embodied interaction in immersive learning environments, like virtual reality, tend to treat all bodies the same without considering the nuanced cultural histories those bodies have with being mobile, especially within—and beyond—technology-mediated environments. In response, this study pivots from perspectives on embodied interaction that underscore the inextricable link between mind and body in favor of sociocultural perspectives to embodiment that emphasize the cultural-historical production of embodied interaction across space and over time. Through multimodal analysis of 10 learners’ experiences in a virtual reality experience called Thought for Food, this article contributes (1) an overt focus on the importance of feeling histories—embodied ways of sensing, feeling, and moving within digital environments—of learners engaging in virtual reality environments in order to promote equitable learning opportunities and (2) argues for future designs that are attuned to frictions—contestations between bodies and interfaces—that potentially collide with learners’ feeling histories.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)56-77
Number of pages22
JournalE-Learning and Digital Media
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Education
  • Computer Science Applications


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