Stanford University

Expectancy Violations Related to a Virtual Human’s Joint Gaze Behavior in Real-Virtual Human Interactions

Kim, K., Nagendran, A., Bailenson, J.N., & Welch, G.F. (2015). Expectancy Violations Related to a Virtual Human’s Joint Gaze Behavior in Real-Virtual Human Interactions 28th Annual Conference on Computer Animation and Social Agents.

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Abstract

Joint gaze — the shared gaze by the individuals toward a common object/point of interest — offers important non-verbal cues that allow interlocutors to establish common ground in communication between collocated humans. Joint gaze is related to but distinct from mutual gaze—the gaze by the interlocutors towards each other such as during eye contact, which is also a critical communication cue. We conducted a user study to compare real human perceptions of a virtual human (VH) with their expectancy of the VH’s gaze behavior. Each participant experienced and evaluated two conditions:(i) VH with mutual gaze only and (ii) VH with mutual and joint gaze. We found evidence of positive responses when the VH exhibited joint gaze, and preliminary evidence supporting the effect of expectancy violation, ie, more positive perceptions when participants were presented with VH’s gaze capabilities that exceeded what was expected.

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