How does VR differ from renderings in human perception of office layout design? A quantitative evaluation of a full-scale immersive VR

Mun On Wong, Zhenjie Zheng, Haoyang Liang, Jia Du, Shenghua Zhou, Sanghoon Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Virtual reality (VR) technology provides immersive and interactive user experiences in office layout design. However, the mechanism of how VR impacts human perception in layout selections and how such mechanism differs from the traditional rendering-based exhibition remain unclear. Hence, this research proposes an experience-based full-scale immersive VR-based approach and investigates its quantitative effectiveness when conducting user-centered office layout design and evaluation. Comparative experiments (N=57) with three office designs are conducted, where subjective surveys and objective Stroop tests are utilized to statistically analyze (1) the quantitative difference in user layout satisfaction between using VR and traditional approaches in terms of psychological perceptions and environmental design features, and (2) the consistency between the layout perceptions using VR and the underlying design principles. The results reveal that the influence of VR varies from different design indicators. The significant difference in the satisfaction variation does not exist in the psychological perceptions (i.e., privacy, communication, and concentration) but does exist in the environmental design features (i.e., workspace enclosure, storage, rearrangement), probably because VR can help the end-users visualize the distinct characteristics of office layouts and further rectify their cognition when experiencing daily-life scenarios. In addition, the effectiveness of the VR approach is verified, where the layout perceptions are mostly in line with the design principles. The findings of this research are expected to extend the existing knowledge of VR-based office design and evaluation by providing quantitative evidence and analytical insight into human behaviors in user-centered layout evaluation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102043
JournalJournal of Environmental Psychology
StatePublished - Aug 2023


  • Comparative experiment
  • Office layout evaluation
  • Open-plan office
  • Quantitative analysis
  • Stroop color and word test
  • Virtual reality


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