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Learning effectiveness of 3D virtual reality in hospitality training: a situated cognitive perspective

Tsz-Wai Lui (Graduate Institute of Sport, Leisure and Hospitality Management, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan)
Lakshmi Goel (Coggin College of Business, University of North Florida, Jacksonville, Florida, USA)

Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Technology

ISSN: 1757-9880

Article publication date: 2 February 2022

Issue publication date: 10 June 2022




Training is one of the key dimensions of internal marketing. Virtual reality (VR), a computer technology that replicates an environment (real or imagined) and simulates a user’s physical presence in that environment to allow for user interaction, offers unique opportunities from a training perspective, such as allowing users to improve their skills without the consequence of failing real customers or the need to be in the real environment physically. This study aims to focus on comparing the effectiveness of VR hospitality training with that of real-world hospitality training.


This study adopts situated cognition theory to empirically test the effect of the awareness of contextual variables (social interaction, location and task) on learning and compare learning outcomes between tourism training in VR and real-world experimental settings.


Results indicate that location and task awareness enhance cognitive absorption, but social awareness does not influence cognitive absorption. There is no significant difference between training in real-world and VR environments. Finally, cognitive absorption has a positive effect on mental model change (the learning outcome).


This result advances the theoretical understanding on the significance of learning context by applying situated cognition theory in hospitality training and has significant implications for training that aims for rigor and efficiency within cost, location and time constraints.


培训是内部营销的关键维度之一。 虚拟现实 (VR), 一种复制某种环境(真实的或想象的)并模拟在该环境中实质性存在的用户的计算机技术并且允许用户交互, 从培训的角度来看提供独特的机会, 例如允许用户在没有培训的情况下提高他们的技能避免承担损失真实客户的后果或需要实际身处真实环境中。 本研究的重点是比较 VR 酒店培训与现实世界的招待培训的效果。


本研究采用情境认知理论对情境变量(社交互动、位置和任务)的认识对学习和比较 VR 和现实世界实验环境中的旅游培训之间的学习成果进行实证检验。


结果表明, 位置和任务意识增强了认知吸收, 但社会意识不影响认知吸收。 在现实世界和 VR 环境中的训练之间没有显着差异。 最后, 认知吸收对心理模式改变(学习结果)有显著积极作用。


该结果通过在酒店培训中应用情境认知理论促进了对学习情境重要性的理论理解, 并对旨在成本、地点和时间限制内实现严谨和高效的培训具有重要意义。



This research was funded by Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan [grant number: 107-2410-H-130-046-].

Funding: Ministry of Science and Technology, Taiwan (MOST 107-2410-H-130-046).


Lui, T.-W. and Goel, L. (2022), "Learning effectiveness of 3D virtual reality in hospitality training: a situated cognitive perspective", Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Technology, Vol. 13 No. 3, pp. 441-460.



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