Wayfinding behaviour in a multi-level building: A comparative study of HMD VR and Desktop VR

Yan Feng*, Dorine C. Duives, Serge P. Hoogendoorn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)
56 Downloads (Pure)


Virtual Reality (VR) provides the possibility to study pedestrian wayfinding behaviour in multi-level buildings. Although VR has been applied increasingly to study pedestrian behaviour, it has remained unclear how different VR technology would affect behavioural outcomes in a multi-level building. The study compares the adoption of different VR technologies for pedestrian wayfinding studies, via investigating the difference in pedestrian wayfinding behaviour and user experience. Wayfinding experiments with two groups of participants were conducted using either HMD VR or Desktop VR. Pedestrian movement trajectory data were collected via the VR system and user experience data were recorded via a questionnaire. These data allow for direct comparison and detailed analysis of pedestrian behaviour and user experience between the adoption of two VR technologies. The results showed that technological differences have a significant impact on wayfinding task performance and head rotation change. However, the route choice, exit choice and user experience were overall similar between the two groups. These results provide empirical evidence supporting researchers to choose between immersive and non-immersive VR when study pedestrian wayfinding behaviour.
Original languageEnglish
Article number101475
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
JournalAdvanced Engineering Informatics
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Desktop VR
  • Evacuation
  • Exit choice
  • HMD VR
  • Human–computer interaction
  • Route choice
  • Wayfinding behaviour


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