Functional performance in a virtual reality task with differential executive functional loads

Zhengsi Chang, Brandon Pires, Daniel Krawczyk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


We presented a Virtual Reality (VR)-based functional task with three executive functional load levels and examined some aspects of this task using performance data of young healthy adults. We named the task the modified version of kitchen test (MVKT) from the Virtual Reality Functional Capacity Assessment Tool (VRFCAT). A sample of 42 participants (age M ​= ​20.95, SD ​= ​2.66; 69.05% female; 85.71% right handedness) completed MVKT and took a questionnaire regarding user experience and strategy use. First, we have evidence for good user experience. Chunking, visual and verbal strategies were reported to be used by most participants. Second, working memory capacity cannot fully predict performance in young healthy adults. This lack of meaningful relationship between the two was consistent across all three levels. Finally, we investigated the impact of executive functional load on the task performance. Quantitative analysis showed that performance declined as the load increased. Process analysis demonstrated that executive functional load impacted the sequential patterns of process, supporting the notion that people completed the task by proceeding down different paths to performance. We hope that by presenting our work, we have highlighted the unique characteristics of VR-based functional assessment to researchers who are interested in these methods.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number100035
JournalComputers in Human Behavior Reports
StatePublished - Aug 1 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Executive function
  • Functional capacity
  • Neuropsychological assessment
  • Virtual reality
  • Young adults

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Cognitive Neuroscience
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Neuroscience (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Computer Science Applications


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