Understanding learners’ acceptance of high-immersion virtual reality systems: Insights from confirmatory and exploratory PLS-SEM analyses

Alex James Barrett*, Austin Pack, Ethan Douglas Quaid

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Citations (Scopus)


This article reports on a study that investigated user acceptance of a high-immersion virtual reality learning environment to learn English paragraph writing structure. 134 undergraduate university students participated in the study by using a high-immersion virtual reality system combined with an in-house developed virtual reality learning environment program for the purpose of learning paragraph structure. A post-session questionnaire was used to collect data. A partial least squares structural equation modelling (PLS-SEM) analysis was then conducted to test an extended technology acceptance model conceptualized from a priori theoretical deduction and previous empirical findings. The extended model featured the constructs of Imagination, Immersion, and Interaction as exogenous variables with Perceived Ease of Use and Perceived Usefulness in mediating roles leading to the endogenous construct of Behavioral Intention to Use. Results of the confirmatory PLS-SEM analysis revealed inherent problems with the model's application to the high-immersion virtual reality system and program used. Considering these findings, a PLS-SEM exploratory model optimization analysis was conducted which saw the variable of Immersion best relocated to be a predicator for both the Interaction and Imagination constructs. This exploratory model showed superior predictive relevance and improved significance of the relevant construct paths. Based on these results, this paper provides new theoretical reasoning that is in line with these statistical findings, namely that the construct of Immersion is best positioned as a singular external exogenous variable impacting Interaction and Imagination for the high-immersion virtual reality technology acceptance model used in this study.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104214
JournalComputers and Education
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2021


  • High-immersion
  • Human-computer interface
  • Pedagogical issues
  • Virtual learning environment
  • Virtual reality


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