ASU team developing virtual reality software to teach cross-cultural norms

A virtual reality app developed from the Cross-Cultural Communication Lab team will be used to create a simulation of a business setting where students can learn cross cultural norms to help prepare them for real word scenarios.
Elizabeth Villar

The Cross-Cultural Communication Lab at Arizona State University’s Learning Futures program is developing virtual reality (VR) simulations to teach people about cross-cultural norms and language in a business environment. Developed in collaboration with ASU’s Thunderbird School of Global Management, the simulations will immerse students in virtual business scenarios and use a VR platform developed by Talespin, a company that creates VR technology for workplace training. The simulations are projected to launch in the spring of 2023 and will be provided in English and potentially other languages. The simulations will be used in language classes at ASU, and the student can be graded based on the choices they made. The simulations are meant to be used for less than 20min increments to prevent headaches with VR. In the future, the simulations could potentially be available for a fee for use by people who do not attend ASU. The project team is working with subject matter experts from ASU faculty to navigate sensitive topics and mannerisms that may arise when communicating with people from different cultures and how to apply that to the simulations.

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