A virtual online environment for testing the effect of social and physical context on the effectiveness of health warning messages

David Glance, Ye'Elah Berman, Simone Pettigrew, Michelle Jongenelis, Tanya Chikritzhs, Wenbin Liang, Iain S. Pratt, Terry Slevin

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperConference paper

Abstract

Testing the effectiveness of warning statements designed to encourage healthy lifestyle behaviours is largely done by showing the messages to study participants in the absence of 'real world' social and physical contexts. This approach does not factor in the impact of the medium of the message. A virtual, 360-degree environment (Messaging360) was developed that online participants can explore and be exposed to messages in a variety of different social and physical contexts: through advertising in a newspaper, labels on products and from a small child and a doctor avatar. The platform allows for large numbers of participants to be tested in a way that models real-life contexts for the messages and so may represent a more effective way of assessing their impact in delivering the health information. Analysis revealed a significant difference in the time spent attending to messages delivered by different people or objects in the simulation. Participants also attended to the message delivered by the doctor avatar longer than the child avatar, which was further affected by the order in which they were encountered. There was also a significant association between age and time spent in the simulation. It was concluded that the Messaging360 platform models real-life contexts closely enough to provoke detectable differences in responses from participants by varying the context in which the message is being delivered. The program and the warning statements can be manipulated to test a broad range of hypotheses in future studies.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2017 IEEE 5th International Conference on Serious Games and Applications for Health, SeGAH 2017
PublisherIEEE, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
ISBN (Electronic)9781509054824
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jun 2017
Event5th IEEE International Conference on Serious Games and Applications for Health, SeGAH 2017 - Perth, Australia
Duration: 2 Apr 20174 Apr 2017

Conference

Conference5th IEEE International Conference on Serious Games and Applications for Health, SeGAH 2017
CountryAustralia
CityPerth
Period2/04/174/04/17

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Glance, D., Berman, YE., Pettigrew, S., Jongenelis, M., Chikritzhs, T., Liang, W., ... Slevin, T. (2017). A virtual online environment for testing the effect of social and physical context on the effectiveness of health warning messages. In 2017 IEEE 5th International Conference on Serious Games and Applications for Health, SeGAH 2017 [7939255] IEEE, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. https://doi.org/10.1109/SeGAH.2017.7939255