We undertook user testing (UT) with the Fossil Room virtual reality experience that was introduced at the open day at Rhondda Heritage Park.

Most participants were children, with a few adults, one over 80 years old, also taking part

The experience enables participants to handle and inspect, seven fossils. Most of them are related to the Welsh fossil record. Each fossil is introduced by voice and has an information board. An animated Dinosaur wanders through the library, which is the setting for the fossil room.

Short video of the Fossil Room virtual reality experince. ©Vision Fountain

Around 30% of participants filled in UT forms that asked a rage of simple questions related to the experience. Our sample size, though relatively small, (19) does provide a little insight into the experience from the users point of view.

We converted the “Fan House”, a large open room of around 5 meters x 3 meters at Rhondda Heritage Park, into a VR room. We marked out a five, four meter square “play spaces” for each user. We had five users at one time.

60 % of users were experiencing virtual reality for the first time, approx. 75% found the experience “very interesting” and less than 5% experienced “motion sickness” .

Approx. 80% of participants said that they “learned something” in the fossil room. Control of the experience was relatively easy, with no one reporting “very difficult” or “difficult” to control. The voice (that introduced fossil items was was said to be mostly “clear”, with 10% saying it was “very unclear” or “unclear”. Everyone picked up at at least one fossil and over 80% picking up 5 or more items.

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