Jeremy Bailenson is founding director of Stanford University’s Virtual Human Interaction Lab, Thomas More Storke Professor in the Department of Communication, Professor (by courtesy) of Education, Professor (by courtesy) Program in Symbolic Systems, a Senior Fellow at the Woods Institute for the Environment, and a Faculty Leader at Stanford’s Center for Longevity. He earned a B.A. cum laude from the University of Michigan in 1994 and a Ph.D. in cognitive psychology from Northwestern University in 1999. He spent four years at the University of California, Santa Barbara as a Post-Doctoral Fellow and then an Assistant Research Professor.

Bailenson studies the psychology of Virtual and Augmented Reality, in particular how virtual experiences lead to changes in perceptions of self and others. His lab builds and studies systems that allow people to meet in virtual space, and explores the changes in the nature of social interaction. His most recent research focuses on how virtual experiences can transform education, environmental conservation, empathy, and health. He is the recipient of the Dean’s Award for Distinguished Teaching at Stanford.

He has published more than 100 academic papers, in interdisciplinary journals such as Science, the Journal of the American Medical Association, and PLoS One, as well domain-specific journals in the fields of communication, computer science, education, environmental science, law, marketing, medicine, political science, and psychology. His work has been continuously funded by the National Science Foundation for 15 years.

Bailenson consults pro bono on Virtual Reality policy for government agencies including the State Department, the US Senate, Congress, the California Supreme Court, the Federal Communication Committee, the U.S. Army, Navy, and Air Force, the Department of Defense, the Department of Energy, the National Research Council, and the National Institutes of Health.

His first book Infinite Reality, co-authored with Jim Blascovich, was quoted by the U.S. Supreme Court outlining the effects of immersive media. His new book, Experience on Demand, was reviewed by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Nature, and The Times of London, and was an Amazon Best-seller.

He has written opinion pieces for The Washington Post, CNN, PBS NewsHour, Wired, National Geographic, Slate, The San Francisco Chronicle, and The Chronicle of Higher Education, and has produced or directed five Virtual Reality documentary experiences which were official selections at the Tribeca Film Festival. His lab’s research has exhibited publicly at museums and aquariums, including a permanent installation at the San Jose Tech Museum.

Academic Appointments

Administrative Appointments

  • Senior Fellow, Woods Institute for the Environment, Stanford University (2013 - Present)

Honors & Awards

  • Dean's Award for Distinguished Teaching for First Years of Teaching, Stanford University (2007)
  • Top-Paper Award, Communication and Technology division of the International Communication Association (2005)
  • Top-Paper Award, Communication and Technology division of the International Communication Association (2007)
  • Top-Paper Award, Nonverbal Communication Division of the National Communication Association (2009)
  • Top-Paper Award, International Society for Presence conference (2012)
  • Top-Paper nomination, Conference on Computer-Human Interaction (CHI) (2008)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations

  • Director of Graduate Studies, Doctoral Program in Communication (2010 - Present)
  • Director, Co-Terminal Master’s Degree Program in Media Studies, Department of Communication (2006 - 2009)
  • Director, Job Search in Mideast Studies for the Communication Department, Stanford University (2013 - 2013)
  • Director, Job Search in Environmental Communication, Stanford University (2013 - 2013)
  • Director of Graduate Studies, Department of Communication, Stanford University (2012 - Present)
  • Member, Dean’s Committee for Curriculum Review, Humanities and Social Sciences, Stanford University (2010 - Present)
  • Director, Co-terminal Masters Program, Department of Communication, Stanford University (2006 - Present)
  • Member, PhD Committee, Department of Communication, Stanford University (2007 - Present)
  • Member, Admissions Committee, Ph.D. Program, Department of Communication, Stanford University (2003 - Present)
  • Member, Departmental Committee on Mendenhall Reconstruction, Department of Communication, Departmental Committee on Mendenhall Reconstruction, Stanford University (2007 - 2007)
  • Member, Faculty, Symbolic Systems Program, Stanford University (2004 - Present)
  • Member, Advisory Board, Research Experience Program, Stanford University (2007 - Present)
  • Reviewer, Annual International Workshop on Presence (Program Committee)
  • Reviewer, Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication
  • Reviewer, Association for Computing Machinery Special Interest Group on Computer-Human Interaction
  • Reviewer, Association for Computing Machinery Special Interest Group on Graphics
  • Reviewer, Association for Computing Machinery Transactions on Applied Perception
  • Reviewer, Cognition
  • Reviewer, Communication Research
  • Reviewer, Communication Theory
  • Reviewer, Computers in Human Behavior
  • Reviewer, Cyberpsychology and Behavior
  • Reviewer, European Journal of Social Psychology
  • Reviewer, Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Virtual Reality
  • Reviewer, Health Psychology
  • Reviewer, Human Communication Research
  • Reviewer, Human Robot Interaction (Program Committee)
  • Reviewer, IEEE Computer Graphics and Applications
  • Reviewer, International Communication Association
  • Reviewer, International Journal of Human Computer Studies
  • Reviewer, Intelligent Virtual Agents (Program Committee)
  • Reviewer, Journal of Applied Social Psychology
  • Reviewer, Journal of Consumer Research
  • Reviewer, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General
  • Reviewer, Media Psychology (Editorial Board)
  • Reviewer, Memory and Cognition
  • Reviewer, Political Communication
  • Reviewer, Political Psychology
  • Associate Editor, PRESENCE: Teleoperators and Virtual Environments
  • Reviewer, Psychiatry Research
  • Reviewer, Psychological Science
  • Reviewer, Transactions on Computer-Human Interaction
  • Reviewer, Virtual Reality
  • Grant Reviewer, United Kingdom Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council
  • Grant Reviewer, MacArthur Fellows Program
  • Grant Reviewer, National Science Foundation (HCC)
  • Grant Reviewer, National Science Foundation (TESS)
  • Grant Reviewer, National Science Foundation (VOSS)
  • Grant Reviewer, Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research
  • Grant Reviewer, Stanford Humanities Center
  • Grant Reviewer, Stanford’s Media-X Center
  • Grant Reviewer, Swiss National Science Foundation
  • Grant Reviewer, United States Army

Program Affiliations

  • Science, Technology and Society
  • Stanford SystemX Alliance

Professional Education

  • B.A., University of Michigan, Cognitive Science (1994)
  • M.S., Cognitive Psychology, Northwestern University (1996)
  • Ph.D., Northwestern University, Cognitive Psychology (1999)

Research Interests

  • Brain and Learning Sciences
  • Technology and Education

2021-22 Courses

Stanford Advisees

All Publications

  • Virtual reality’s effect on children’s inhibitory control, social compliance, and sharing Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology Bailey, J. O., Bailenson, J. N., Obradović, J., Aguiar, N. R. 2019; 64: 1-11
  • Social Attention in a Virtual Public Speaking Task in Higher Functioning Children With Autism AUTISM RESEARCH Jarrold, W., Mundy, P., Gwaltney, M., Bailenson, J., Hatt, N., McIntyre, N., Kim, K., Solomon, M., Novotny, S., Swain, L. 2013; 6 (5): 393-410


    Impairments in social attention play a major role in autism, but little is known about their role in development after preschool. In this study, a public speaking task was used to study social attention, its moderators, and its association with classroom learning in elementary and secondary students with higher functioning autism spectrum disorder (HFASD). Thirty-seven students with HFASD and 54 age- and intelligence quotient (IQ)-matched peers without symptoms of ASD were assessed in a virtual classroom public speaking paradigm. This paradigm assessed the ability to attend to nine avatar peers seated at a table, while simultaneously answering self-referenced questions. Students with HFASD looked less frequently to avatar peers in the classroom while talking. However, social attention was moderated in the HFASD sample such that students with lower IQ, and/or more symptoms of social anxiety, and/or more attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder inattentive symptoms, displayed more atypical social attention. Group differences were more pronounced when the classroom contained social avatars versus nonsocial targets. Moreover, measures of social attention rather than nonsocial attention were significantly associated with parent report and objective measures of learning in the classroom. The data in this study support the hypothesis of the Social Attention Model of ASD that social attention disturbance remains part of the school-aged phenotype of autism that is related to syndrome-specific problems in social learning. More research of this kind would likely contribute to advances in the understanding of the development of the spectrum of autism and educational intervention approaches for affected school-aged children. Autism Res 2013, ●●: ●●-●●. © 2013 International Society for Autism Research, Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

    View details for DOI 10.1002/aur.1302

    View details for Web of Science ID 000325933600010

    View details for PubMedID 23696132

  • Post-error expression of speed and force while performing a simple, monotonous task with a haptic pen BEHAVIOUR & INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY Alonso, M. B., Keyson, D. V., Jabon, M. E., Hummels, C. C., Hekkert, P. P., Bailenson, J. N. 2013; 32 (8): 778-782
  • The embodiment of sexualized virtual selves: The Proteus effect and experiences of self-objectification via avatars COMPUTERS IN HUMAN BEHAVIOR Fox, J., Bailenson, J. N., Tricase, L. 2013; 29 (3): 930-938
  • Virtual Superheroes: Using Superpowers in Virtual Reality to Encourage Prosocial Behavior PLOS ONE Rosenberg, R. S., Baughman, S. L., Bailenson, J. N. 2013; 8 (1)


    Recent studies have shown that playing prosocial video games leads to greater subsequent prosocial behavior in the real world. However, immersive virtual reality allows people to occupy avatars that are different from them in a perceptually realistic manner. We examine how occupying an avatar with the superhero ability to fly increases helping behavior.Using a two-by-two design, participants were either given the power of flight (their arm movements were tracked to control their flight akin to Superman's flying ability) or rode as a passenger in a helicopter, and were assigned one of two tasks, either to help find a missing diabetic child in need of insulin or to tour a virtual city. Participants in the "super-flight" conditions helped the experimenter pick up spilled pens after their virtual experience significantly more than those who were virtual passengers in a helicopter.The results indicate that having the "superpower" of flight leads to greater helping behavior in the real world, regardless of how participants used that power. A possible mechanism for this result is that having the power of flight primed concepts and prototypes associated with superheroes (e.g., Superman). This research illustrates the potential of using experiences in virtual reality technology to increase prosocial behavior in the physical world.

    View details for DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0055003

    View details for Web of Science ID 000315563800099

    View details for PubMedID 23383029

  • Designing virtual environments to measure behavioral correlates of state-level body satisfaction. Studies in health technology and informatics Purvis, C. K., Jones, M., Bailey, J., Bailenson, J., Taylor, C. B. 2013; 191: 168-172


    Virtual reality (VR) offers a unique method for eliciting state-variable fluctuations in body satisfaction and associated behaviors by allowing near-perfect control over environmental factors. Greater variability in momentary body satisfaction is associated with more problematic eating behavior and cognitive styles predictive of eating disorders. The field currently lacks a model for understanding environmental variables and everyday events that tend to influence fluctuations in state body satisfaction. This study proposes a model of state-level body satisfaction and presents a method for measuring changes as they occur. We aim to investigate body comparison, selective attention and body checking behaviors in relation to self-report levels of state body satisfaction. We additionally assess interpersonal correlates of state body satisfaction using VR to measure personal distance between subjects and avatars of varying body sizes. 80 female college students with varying levels of weight and shape concerns will be exposed to five virtual environments designed to elicit varying levels of body dissatisfaction: (a) an empty room; (b) an empty beach; (c) a beach populated with avatars; (d) an empty party scene; (e) a party scene populated with avatars. Self-report body satisfaction was measured immediately following each exposure. A tracking system automatically tracked subjects' head orientation and body translation to measure visual gaze and personal space behavior relative to each virtual human within the environment. Data collection is currently underway and expected to be completed by May 2013. Preliminary data and development of the VR model for state-variable assessment will be presented.

    View details for PubMedID 23792867

  • Identity Manipulation—What Happens When Identity Presentation is Not Truthful The Social Net: Understanding Our Online Behavior Segovia, K. Y., Bailenson, J. N. edited by Amichai - Hamburger, Y. Oxford University Press. 2013: 45–61
  • The effect of embodied experiences on selfother merging, attitude, and helping behavior Media Psychology Ahn, S. J., Le, A. M., Bailenson, J. N. 2013; 16 (1): 7 - 38
  • Virtual imposters: Responses to avatars that do not look like their controllers SOCIAL INFLUENCE Segovia, K. Y., Bailenson, J. N. 2012; 7 (4): 285-303
  • Avatar Self-Identification as a Metric of Self-Presence Won, A. S., Bailansen, J. N. 2012
  • Virtual human identification line-ups Craniofacial Identification Segovia, K. Y., Bailenson, J. N., Leonetti, C. edited by Wilkinson, C., Rynn, C. Cambridge University Press. 2012: 101–114
  • Effects of Facial and Voice Similarity on Presence in a Public Speaking Virtual Environment Aymerich-Franch, L., Karutz, C., Bailenson, J. N. 2012
  • Tracking Gestures to Detect Gender Won, A. S., Yu, L., Janssen, J. H., Bailenson, J. N. 2012
  • Avatars Leadership in Science and Technology: A Reference Handbook Ahn, S. J., Fox, J., Bailenson, J. N. edited by Bainbridge, W. S. SAGE Publications. 2012
  • How immersive is enough? A foundation for a meta-analysis of the effect of immersive technology on measured presence Cummings, J. J., Bailenson, J. N., Fielder, M. J. 2012
  • Physiological Responses to Virtual Selves and Virtual Others Journal of CyberTherapy & Rehabilitation Fox, J., Bailenson, J. N., Ricciardi, T. 2012; 5 (1): 69 - 72
  • Doppelgangers - a new form of self? PSYCHOLOGIST Bailenson, J. N. 2012; 25 (1): 36-38
  • Facial-Expression Analysis for Predicting Unsafe Driving Behavior IEEE PERVASIVE COMPUTING Jabon, M. E., Bailenson, J. N., Pontikakis, E., Takayama, L., Nass, C. 2011; 10 (4): 84-95
  • SELF-ENDORSING VERSUS OTHER-ENDORSING IN VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS The Effect on Brand Attitude and Purchase Intention JOURNAL OF ADVERTISING Ahn, S. J., Bailenson, J. N. 2011; 40 (2): 93-106
  • This Is Your Mind Online IEEE SPECTRUM Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J. 2011; 48 (6): 78-83
  • Automatically Analyzing Facial-Feature Movements to Identify Human Errors IEEE INTELLIGENT SYSTEMS Jabon, M. E., Ahn, S. J., Bailenson, J. N. 2011; 26 (2): 54-63
  • Increasing Saving Behavior Through Age-Progressed Renderings of the Future Self JOURNAL OF MARKETING RESEARCH Hershfield, H. E., Goldstein, D. G., Sharpe, W. F., Fox, J., Yeykelis, L., Carstensen, L. L., Bailenson, J. N. 2011; 48: S23-S37


    Many people fail to save what they need to for retirement (Munnell, Webb, and Golub-Sass 2009). Research on excessive discounting of the future suggests that removing the lure of immediate rewards by pre-committing to decisions, or elaborating the value of future rewards can both make decisions more future-oriented. In this article, we explore a third and complementary route, one that deals not with present and future rewards, but with present and future selves. In line with thinkers who have suggested that people may fail, through a lack of belief or imagination, to identify with their future selves (Parfit 1971; Schelling 1984), we propose that allowing people to interact with age-progressed renderings of themselves will cause them to allocate more resources toward the future. In four studies, participants interacted with realistic computer renderings of their future selves using immersive virtual reality hardware and interactive decision aids. In all cases, those who interacted with virtual future selves exhibited an increased tendency to accept later monetary rewards over immediate ones.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000296317200004

    View details for PubMedCentralID PMC3949005

  • Virtual Reality and Social Networks Will Be a Powerful Combination: Avatars will make social networks seductive IEEE Spectrum Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J. 2011
  • Virtual Reality and Social Networks Will Be a Powerful Combination: Avatars will make social networks seductive IEEE Spectrum Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J. 2011
  • Infinite Reality: Avatars, Eternal Life, New Worlds, and the Dawn of the Virtual Revolution Bailenson, J. N. Harper Collins, William Morrow division. 2011
  • The Expression of Personality in Virtual Worlds SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGICAL AND PERSONALITY SCIENCE Yee, N., Harris, H., Jabon, M., Bailenson, J. N. 2011; 2 (1): 5-12
  • Intimate Heartbeats: Opportunities for Affective Communication Technology IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON AFFECTIVE COMPUTING Janssen, J. H., Bailenson, J. N., IJsselsteijn, W. A., Westerink, J. H. 2010; 1 (2): 72-80
  • Effects of Facial Similarity on User Responses to Embodied Agents ACM TRANSACTIONS ON COMPUTER-HUMAN INTERACTION van Vugt, H. C., Bailenson, J. N., Hoorn, J. F., Konijn, E. A. 2010; 17 (2)
  • The use of doppelgangers to promote health behavior change CyberTherapy & Rehabilitation Fox, J., Bailenson, J. N. 2010; 3 (2): 16 - 17
  • Virtual Doppelgangers: Psychological Effects of Avatars who Ignore their Owners Online Worlds: Convergence of the Real and the Virtual Bailenson, J. N., Segovia, K. edited by Bainbridge, B. New York: Springer. 2010: 175–186
  • High-Tech view: The use of immersive virtual environments in jury trials Marquette Law Review Leonetti, C., Bailenson, J. N. 2010; 93: 1073 - 1120
  • Using Automated Facial Expression Analysis for Emotion and Behavior Prediction Handbook of Emotions and Mass Media Ahn, S. J., Bailenson, J. N., Fox, J., Jabon, M. E. edited by Doeveling, K., von Scheve, C., Konjin, E. A. London/New York: Routledge.. 2010
  • High-Tech view: The use of immersive virtual environments in jury trials Marquette Law Review Leonetti, C., Bailenson, J. N. 2010; 93: 1073 - 1120
  • The Evolution of Social Behavior over Time in Second Life PRESENCE-TELEOPERATORS AND VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS Harris, H., Bailenson, J. N., Nielsen, A., Yee, N. 2009; 18 (6): 434-448
  • Leveraging Collaborative Virtual Environment Technology for Inter-Population Research on Persuasion in a Classroom Setting PRESENCE-TELEOPERATORS AND VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS McCall, C., Bunyan, D. P., Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J., Beall, A. C. 2009; 18 (5): 361-369
  • Virtual Virgins and Vamps: The Effects of Exposure to Female Characters' Sexualized Appearance and Gaze in an Immersive Virtual Environment SEX ROLES Fox, J., Bailenson, J. N. 2009; 61 (3-4): 147-157
  • Virtual Experiences, Physical Behaviors: The Effect of Presence on Imitation of an Eating Avatar PRESENCE-TELEOPERATORS AND VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS Fox, J., Bailenson, J., Binney, J. 2009; 18 (4): 294-303
  • The Proteus Effect Implications of Transformed Digital Self-Representation on Online and Offline Behavior COMMUNICATION RESEARCH Yee, N., Bailenson, J. N., Ducheneaut, N. 2009; 36 (2): 285-312
  • Virtual Self-Modeling: The Effects of Vicarious Reinforcement and Identification on Exercise Behaviors MEDIA PSYCHOLOGY Fox, J., Bailenson, J. N. 2009; 12 (1): 1-25
  • Virgins and vamps: The effects of exposure to agents’ sexualized appearance and gaze in an immersive virtual environment Sex Roles Fox, J. A., Bailenson, J. N. 2009; 61: 147 - 157
  • Virtual Reality: A Social Scientist’s Survival Guide Journal of Media Psychology Fox, J. A., Arena, D., Bailenson, J. N. 2009; 21 (3): 95 - 113
  • Morality in tele-immersive environments Segovia, K. Y., Bailenson, J. N., Monin, B. 2009
  • Virtually True: Children's Acquisitions of False Memories in Virtual Reality Media Psychology Segovia, K., Bailenson, J. N. 2009; 12: 371 - 393
  • The Difference Between Being and Seeing: The Relative Contribution of Self-Perception and Priming to Behavioral Changes via Digital Self-Representation MEDIA PSYCHOLOGY Yee, N., Bailenson, J. N. 2009; 12 (2): 195-209
  • The influence of racial embodiment on racial bias in immersive virtual environments SOCIAL INFLUENCE Groom, V., Bailenson, J. N., Nass, C. 2009; 4 (3): 231-248
  • Virtually True: Children's Acquisition of False Memories in Virtual Reality MEDIA PSYCHOLOGY Segovia, K. Y., Bailenson, J. N. 2009; 12 (4): 371-393
  • A Method for Longitudinal Behavioral Data Collection in Second Life PRESENCE-TELEOPERATORS AND VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS Yee, N., Bailenson, J. N. 2008; 17 (6): 594-596
  • Self-Representations in Immersive Virtual Environments JOURNAL OF APPLIED SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J., Guadagno, R. E. 2008; 38 (11): 2673-2690
  • The effect of interactivity on learning physical actions in virtual reality MEDIA PSYCHOLOGY Bailenson, J., Patel, K., Nielsen, A., Bajscy, R., Jung, S., Kurillo, G. 2008; 11 (3): 354-376
  • The effects of witness viewpoint distance, angle, and choice on eyewitness accuracy in police lineups conducted in immersivc virtual environments 9th Annual International Workshop on Presence Bailenson, J. M., Davies, A., Blascovich, J., Beall, A. C., McCall, C., Guadagno, R. E. M I T PRESS. 2008: 242–55
  • Real-time classification of evoked emotions using facial feature tracking and physiological responses INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF HUMAN-COMPUTER STUDIES Bailenson, J. N., Pontikakis, E. D., Mauss, I. B., Gross, J. J., Jabon, M. E., Hutcherson, C. A., Nass, C., John, O. 2008; 66 (5): 303-317
  • Detecting digital chameleons COMPUTERS IN HUMAN BEHAVIOR Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N., Patel, K., Beall, A. C. 2008; 24 (1): 66-87
  • Cognitive science The International Encyclopedia of Communication Bailenson, J. N., Fox, J. edited by Donsbach, W. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell. 2008: 548–551
  • Cognitive processing of visuals International encyclopedia of communication Bailenson, J. N., Ahn, S. J. edited by Donsbach, W. 2008: 5325–5327
  • Transformed social interaction in mediated interpersonal communication Mediated interpersonal communication Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N., Blascovich, J., Guadgano, R. E. edited by Konijn, E., Tanis, M., Utz, M. S., Linden, A. 2008: 77–99
  • Psychology in communication processes International encyclopedia of communication Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N. edited by Donsbach, W. 2008: 3931–3937
  • Research uses of multi-user virtual environments The handbook of Internet research Schroeder, R., Bailensen, J. N. edited by Lee, R., Fielding, N., Blank, G. London: Sage. 2008: 327–342
  • Psychophysics of perceiving eye-gaze and head direction with peripheral vision: Implications for the dynamics of eye-gaze behavior PERCEPTION Loomis, J. M., Kelly, J. W., Pusch, M., Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C. 2008; 37 (9): 1443-1457


    Two psychophysical experiments are reported, one dealing with the visual perception of the head orientation of another person (the 'looker') and the other dealing with the perception of the looker's direction of eye gaze. The participant viewed the looker with different retinal eccentricities, ranging from foveal to far-peripheral viewing. On average, judgments of head orientation were reliable even out to the extremes of peripheral vision (90 degrees eccentricity), with better performance at the extremes when the participant was able to view the looker changing head orientation from one trial to the next. In sharp contrast, judgments of eye-gaze direction were reliable only out to 4 degrees eccentricity, signifying that the eye-gaze social signal is available to people only when they fixate near the looker's eyes. While not unexpected, this vast difference in availability of information about head direction and eye direction, both of which can serve as indicators of the looker's focus of attention, is important for understanding the dynamics of eye-gaze behavior.

    View details for DOI 10.1068/p5896

    View details for Web of Science ID 000260949900012

    View details for PubMedID 18986070


    View details for DOI 10.1093/poq/nfn054

    View details for Web of Science ID 000263833700007

  • The use of immersive virtual reality in the learning sciences: Digital transformations of teachers, students, and social context JOURNAL OF THE LEARNING SCIENCES Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N., Blascovich, J., Beall, A. C., Lundblad, N., Jin, M. 2008; 17 (1): 102-141
  • Virtual interpersonal touch and digital chameleons JOURNAL OF NONVERBAL BEHAVIOR Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N. 2007; 31 (4): 225-242
  • The Proteus Effect: The effect of transformed self-representation on behavior HUMAN COMMUNICATION RESEARCH Yee, N., Bailenson, J. 2007; 33 (3): 271-290
  • The unbearable likeness of being digital: The persistence of nonverbal social norms in online virtual environments CYBERPSYCHOLOGY & BEHAVIOR Yee, N., Bailenson, J. N., Urbanek, M., Chang, F., Merget, D. 2007; 10 (1): 115-121


    Every day, millions of users interact in real-time via avatars in online environments, such as massively-multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs). These online environments could potentially be unique research platforms for the social sciences and clinical therapy, but it is crucial to first establish that social behavior and norms in virtual environments are comparable to those in the physical world. In an observational study of Second Life, a virtual community, we collected data from avatars in order to explore whether social norms of gender, interpersonal distance (IPD), and eye gaze transfer into virtual environments even though the modality of movement is entirely different (i.e., via keyboard and mouse as opposed to eyes and legs). Our results showed that established findings of IPD and eye gaze transfer into virtual environments: (1) male-male dyads have larger IPDs than female-female dyads, (2) male-male dyads maintain less eye contact than female-female dyads, and (3) decreases in IPD are compensated with gaze avoidance as predicted by the Equilibrium Theory. We discuss implications for users of online games as well as for social scientists who seek to conduct research in virtual environments.

    View details for DOI 10.1089/cpb.2006.9984

    View details for Web of Science ID 000244713800016

    View details for PubMedID 17305457

  • Virtual humans and persuasion: The effects of agency and behavioral realism MEDIA PSYCHOLOGY Guadagno, R. E., Blascovich, J., Bailenson, J. N., McCall, C. 2007; 10 (1): 1-22
  • Sciencepunk: The influence of informed science fiction on virtual reality research SciFi in the Mind's Eye: Reading Science Through Science Fiction Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N., Kim, A., Tecarro, J. edited by Bisson, T., Grebowicz, M. Open Court Publishing. 2007
  • The mere belief of social interaction improves learning Okita, S. Y., Bailenson, J., Schwartz, D. L. 2007
  • Virtual interpersonal touch: Haptic interaction and copresence in collaborative virtual environments International Journal of Multimedia Tools and Applications Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N. 2007; 37 (1): 5 - 14
  • A Meta-Analysis of the Impact of the Inclusion and Realism of Human-Like Faces on User Experiences in Interfaces Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems Yee, N., Bailenson, J. N., Rickertsen, K. ASSOC COMPUTING MACHINERY. 2007: 1–10
  • Virtual interpersonal touch: Expressing and recognizing emotions through haptic devices HUMAN-COMPUTER INTERACTION Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N., Brave, S., Merget, D., Koslow, D. 2007; 22 (3): 325-353
  • A longitudinal study, of task performance, head movements, subjective report, simulator sickness, and transformed social interaction in collaborative virtual environments International VR Design and Usability Workshop Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N. M I T PRESS. 2006: 699–716
  • The effect of behavioral realism and form realism of real-time avatar faces on verbal disclosure, nonverbal disclosure, emotion recognition, and copresence in dyadic interaction 8th Annual International Workshop on Presence Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N., Merget, D., Schroeder, R. M I T PRESS. 2006: 359–72
  • Transformed facial similarity as a political cue: A preliminary investigation POLITICAL PSYCHOLOGY Bailenson, J. N., Garland, P., Iyengar, S., Yee, N. 2006; 27 (3): 373-385
  • Perceiving visual emotions with speech 6th International Conference on Intelligent Virtual Agents Deng, Z., Bailenson, J., Lewis, J. P., Neumann, U. SPRINGER-VERLAG BERLIN. 2006: 107–120
  • Transformed social interaction: Exploring the digital plasticity of avatars Avatars at work and play: Collaboration and interaction in shared virtual environments Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C. edited by Schroeder, R., Axelsson, A. Springer-Verlag. 2006: 1–16
  • The effects of fully immersive virtual reality on the learning of physical tasks Patel, K., Bailenson, J. N., Hack-Jung, S., Diankov, R., Bajcsy, R. 2006
  • Transformed Social Interaction in Collaborative Virtual Environments Digital Media: Transformations in Human Communication Bailenson, J. N. edited by Messaris, P., Humphreys , L. New York: Peter Lang. 2006: 255–264
  • Courtroom applications of virtual environments, immersive virtual environments, and collaborative virtual environments Law and Policy Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J., Beall, A. C., Noveck, B. 2006; 28: 249 - 270
  • Digital chameleons - Automatic assimilation of nonverbal gestures in immersive virtual environments PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE Bailenson, J. N., Yee, N. 2005; 16 (10): 814-819


    Previous research demonstrated social influence resulting from mimicry (the chameleon effect); a confederate who mimicked participants was more highly regarded than a confederate who did not, despite the fact that participants did not explicitly notice the mimicry. In the current study, participants interacted with an embodied artificial intelligence agent in immersive virtual reality. The agent either mimicked a participant's head movements at a 4-s delay or utilized prerecorded movements of another participant as it verbally presented an argument. Mimicking agents were more persuasive and received more positive trait ratings than nonmimickers, despite participants' inability to explicitly detect the mimicry. These data are uniquely powerful because they demonstrate the ability to use automatic, indiscriminate mimicking (i.e., a computer algorithm blindly applied to all movements) to gain social influence. Furthermore, this is the first study to demonstrate social influence effects with a nonhuman, nonverbal mimicker.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000232101200012

    View details for PubMedID 16181445

  • Transformed social interaction, augmented gaze, and social influence in immersive virtual environments HUMAN COMMUNICATION RESEARCH Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C., Loomis, J., Blascovich, J., Turk, M. 2005; 31 (4): 511-537
  • The independent and interactive effects of embodied-agent appearance and behavior on self-report, cognitive, and behavioral markers of copresence in immersive virtual environments PRESENCE-TELEOPERATORS AND VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS Bailenson, J. N., Swinth, K., Hoyt, C., Persky, S., Dimov, A., Blascovich, J. 2005; 14 (4): 379-393
  • Using immersive virtual environment technology to simulate police lineups Virtual decisions: Digital simulations for teaching reasoning in the social sciences and humanities Blascovich, J., Bailenson, J. N. edited by Cohen, Portney, Rehberger, Thorsen Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Earlbaum Associates, Inc.. 2005
  • Transformed social interaction: Decoupling representation from behavior and form in collaborative virtual environments PRESENCE-TELEOPERATORS AND VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C., Loomis, J., Blascovich, J., Turk, M. 2004; 13 (4): 428-441
  • Examining virtual busts: Are photogrammetrically generated head models effective for person identification? PRESENCE-TELEOPERATORS AND VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C., Blascovich, J., Rex, C. 2004; 13 (4): 416-427
  • Comparing behavioral and self-report measures of embodied agents' social presence in immersive virtual environments Bailenson, J. N., Aharoni, E., Beall, A. C., Guadagno, R. E., Dimov, A., Blascovich, J. 2004
  • Multimodal transformed social interaction Turk, M., Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C., Blascovich, J., Guadagno, R. 2004
  • Avatars Encyclopedia of human-computer interaction Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J. edited by Bainbridge, W. S. Berkshire Publishing Group. 2004: 64–68
  • Interpersonal distance in immersive virtual environments PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY BULLETIN Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J., Beall, A. C., Loomis, J. M. 2003; 29 (7): 819-833


    Digital immersive virtual environment technology (IVET) enables behavioral scientists to conduct ecologically realistic experiments with near-perfect experimental control. The authors employed IVET to study the interpersonal distance maintained between participants and virtual humans. In Study 1, participants traversed a three-dimensional virtual room in which a virtual human stood. In Study 2, a virtual human approached participants. In both studies, participant gender, virtual human gender, virtual human gaze behavior, and whether virtual humans were allegedly controlled by humans (i.e., avatars) or computers (i.e., agents) were varied. Results indicated that participants maintained greater distance from virtual humans when approaching their fronts compared to their backs. In addition, participants gave more personal space to virtual agents who engaged them in mutual gaze. Moreover, when virtual humans invaded their personal space, participants moved farthest from virtual human agents. The advantages and disadvantages of IVET for the study of human behavior are discussed.

    View details for DOI 10.1177/0146167203253270

    View details for Web of Science ID 000183496700002

    View details for PubMedID 15018671

  • Non-zero-sum mutual gaze in collaborative virtual environments Beall, A. C., Bailenson, J. N., Loomis, J., Blascovich, J., Rex, C. 2003
  • Using virtual heads for person identification: An empirical study comparing photographs to photogrammetricallygenerated models Journal of Forensic Identification Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C., Blascovich, J. 2003; 53: 722 - 728
  • A bird's eye view: biological categorization and reasoning within and across cultures COGNITION Bailenson, J. N., Shum, M. S., Atran, S., MEDIN, D. L., Coley, J. D. 2002; 84 (1): 1-53


    Many psychological studies of categorization and reasoning use undergraduates to make claims about human conceptualization. Generalizability of findings to other populations is often assumed but rarely tested. Even when comparative studies are conducted, it may be challenging to interpret differences. As a partial remedy, in the present studies we adopt a 'triangulation strategy' to evaluate the ways expertise and culturally different belief systems can lead to different ways of conceptualizing the biological world. We use three groups (US bird experts, US undergraduates, and ordinary Itza' Maya) and two sets of birds (North American and Central American). Categorization tasks show considerable similarity among the three groups' taxonomic sorts, but also systematic differences. Notably, US expert categorization is more similar to Itza' than to US novice categorization. The differences are magnified on inductive reasoning tasks where only undergraduates show patterns of judgment that are largely consistent with current models of category-based taxonomic inference. The Maya commonly employ causal and ecological reasoning rather than taxonomic reasoning. Experts use a mixture of strategies (including causal and ecological reasoning), only some of which current models explain. US and Itza' informants differed markedly when reasoning about passerines (songbirds), reflecting the somewhat different role that songbirds play in the two cultures. The results call into question the importance of similarity-based notions of typicality and central tendency in natural categorization and reasoning. These findings also show that relative expertise leads to a convergence of thought that transcends cultural boundaries and shared experiences.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000175548600001

    View details for PubMedID 12062146

  • Mutual gaze and task performance in shared virtual environments Journal of Visualization and Computer Animation Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C., Blascovich, J. 2002; 13: 1 - 8
  • Immersive virtual environment technology: Just another methodological tool for social psychology? PSYCHOLOGICAL INQUIRY Blascovich, J., Loomis, J., Beall, A. C., Swinth, K. R., Hoyt, C. L., Bailenson, J. N. 2002; 13 (2): 146-149
  • Immersive virtual environment technology as a methodological tool for social psychology PSYCHOLOGICAL INQUIRY Blascovich, J., Loomis, J., Beall, A. C., Swinth, K. R., Hoyt, C. L., Bailenson, J. N. 2002; 13 (2): 103-124
  • Equilibrium theory revisited: Mutual gaze and personal space in virtual environments PRESENCE-TELEOPERATORS AND VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTS Bailenson, J. N., Blascovich, J., Beall, A. C., Loomis, J. M. 2001; 10 (6): 583-598
  • Contrast ratio: Shifting burden of proof in informal arguments DISCOURSE PROCESSES Bailenson, J. 2001; 32 (1): 29-41
  • Intelligent agents who wear your face: Users' reactions to the virtual self Bailenson, J. N., Beall, A. C., Blascovich, J., Weisbuch, M., Raimmundo, R. 2001
  • The initial segment strategy: A heuristic for route selection MEMORY & COGNITION Bailenson, J. N., Shum, M. S., Uttal, D. H. 2000; 28 (2): 306-318


    People often choose one route when traveling from point A to point B and a different route when traveling from point B to point A. To explain these route asymmetries, we propose that people rely on a heuristic (the initial segment strategy, or ISS) during route planning. This heuristic involves basing decisions disproportionately on the straightness of the initial segments of the routes. Asymmetries arise because the characteristics that favor selection of a particular route in one direction will usually differ from those that favor selection when traveling in the opposite direction. Results from five experiments supported these claims. In the first three experiments, we found that subjects' decisions were asymmetric and involved a preference for initially straight routes. In Experiment 4, we confirmed that the ISS is a heuristic by demonstrating that people rely on it more when under time pressure. However, people can choose the optimal route when instructed to do so. In Experiment 5, we generalized the findings by having subjects select routes on maps of college campuses. Taken together, the results indicate that the ISS can account for asymmetries in route choices on both real and artificial maps.

    View details for Web of Science ID 000086649500014

    View details for PubMedID 10790984

  • Conversational argument strength and burden of proof Doctoral dissertation, Department of Psychology Northwestern University Bailenson, J. N. 2000
  • Reasoning dialogues CURRENT DIRECTIONS IN PSYCHOLOGICAL SCIENCE Rips, L. J., Brem, S. K., Bailenson, J. N. 1999; 8 (6): 172-177
  • Road climbing: Principles governing asymmetric route choices on maps JOURNAL OF ENVIRONMENTAL PSYCHOLOGY Bailenson, J. N., Shum, M. S., Uttal, D. H. 1998; 18 (3): 251-264
  • Road climbing: Principles of route choice Shum, M. S., Bailenson, J., Hwang, S., Piland, L., Uttal, D. 1998
  • Claim strength and burden of proof in interactive arguments 19th Annual Conference of the Cognitive-Science-Society Bailenson, J. N. LAWRENCE ERLBAUM ASSOC PUBL. 1997: 13–18
  • Mechanism-based explanations of causal attribution: An explanation of conjunction and discounting effect Cognitive Psychology Ahn, W., Bailenson, J. 1996; 31: 82 - 123
  • Informal reasoning and burden of proof APPLIED COGNITIVE PSYCHOLOGY Bailenson, J. N., Rips, L. J. 1996; 10: S3-S16
  • Causal attribution as mechanism-based story construction: An explanation of conjunction and discounting effects Ahn, W., Bailenson, J., Gordon, B. 1994