I am a clinical psychology doctoral student at Vanderbilt University studying under Dr. Steven Hollon. I lead a group of ten research assistants as part of the Hollon Research Group. Our team is exploring how virtual reality can be used to treat addiction. We are currently running a study at Journey Pure, an in-patient drug rehabilitation center, to measure how virtual reality can change emotion. This study was developed after I explored VR with patients and heard them say things such as, "All of my anxiety is gone" after only 30 minutes of VR. We are exploring how cognitive behavioral therapy may be more effective in virtual reality, as patients may be better able to learn the skills required to regulate emotion.
I also led the development of PsychLabVR, a new virtual research center located on the Steam VR app store. With IRB consent we collect behavioral data and survey response questions in an Internet-connected immersive virtual environment. Our first alpha experiment involves simulated social scenes to measure social anxiety. This data will be used to train machine learning algorithms in using biometric movement data to infer cognitions and emotion. We also hope to open the platform to other researchers who can collect data with Unity-based environments in PsychLabVR. If you'd like to learn more, please contact me through the form below.