Immersive media provides new avenues for preserving and sharing traditional folktales. To keep up with modern generations and continue to cultivate an interest in the arts as well as different cultures, this researcher argues that storytellers need to keep on adapting by conveying stories in new ways. Virtual Reality (VR) offers an interesting medium to present and preserve folktales. The goal of this study is to evaluate the user and learner experience of an immersive digital media application design using a think aloud protocol, surveys, and tests to document what worked and what did not in the design, including if any informal learning was achieved. To study the design, the investigator re-created a scene of a folktale using immersive technology. For the study, one scene from the new narrative was selected to investigate. The narrative is based on the story type, ATU 480: The Kind and the Unkind Girls, a wonder tale type in the Aarne-Thompson-Uther (ATU) Index, which is a catalog of folktale types used in folklore studies. For this pilot study, 26 participants, primarily Games and Interactive Media (GaIM) students at the University of Central Florida, were gathered. The prototype entitled "The Daughter," was mainly influenced by a Romanian version of the tale and made for the Oculus Quest VR headset. The surveys and tests showed that learning was perceived as well as achieved and that users did feel a sense of immersion, presence, etc., but low audio issues plagued some users. The practical implications of VR storytelling include the potential for discourse about new service strategies and design guidelines, inspired by an iterative design, as embodiment and an increased sense of immersion may aid in digital storytelling. This study also continues the conversation on preserving digital folktales and the role that authenticity plays.
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Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Sciences
Games and Interactive Media
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Popescu, Iulia, "A Pilot Study of an Immersive Folktale User Experience" (2023). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2020-. 1639.