Simulated thoughts in virtual reality for negotiation training enhance self-efficacy and knowledge

Ding Ding*, Willem-Paul Brinkman, Mark A. Neerincx

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)
12 Downloads (Pure)


Negotiating serves as an essential skill in our daily life, however, it is quite challenging to negotiate well. Various negotiation training systems have been developed to solve this problem and improve people's performance in negotiation. Nevertheless, these systems mainly focus on skills practice and less on negotiation understanding or self-efficacy development. Aiming at improving both people's negotiation knowledge and self-efficacy, a virtual reality negotiation training system is proposed that exposes users to virtual cognitions during negotiating with virtual characters. The virtual cognitions, delivered as a personalised voice-over, provide users with a stream of thoughts that reflects on the negotiation progress and their performance, and also presents self-motivational statements. To study the effectiveness of the system and the self-motivational statements included in virtual cognitions, an empirical study with 48 participants was conducted. The study employed a between-subjects design with three groups: waitlist, training with self-motivational statements, and training without self-motivational statements. 24 waitlist participants were also randomly assigned to and completed the training following the waiting period. The results indicated that 1) the system significantly enhanced people's knowledge about negotiation and increased their self-efficacy, 2) the self-motivational statements included in virtual cognitions even further improved self-efficacy. Furthermore, these effects remained after multiple weeks.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102400
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalInternational Journal of Human Computer Studies
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


  • Negotiation skills
  • Self-motivation
  • Social skills training
  • Training system
  • Virtual cognitions
  • Virtual reality


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