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The EmpaT project (BMBF funded, 16SV7229K,  2015-2018) investigates simulated job interviews in virtual environment that comes with a virtual personal assistant who explains every step of the job interview experience. The virtual environment allows simulating various challenges that come along with job interviews, as that users may navigate through to find the room where the actual job interview will take place.  On their way to the interview, users arrive to the reception desk asking for the job interview appointment and wait until they are called for the interview in the nearby lobby. In the waiting phase, users can observe the daily routine of the simulated employees. The EmpaT system allows confronting users with situations that might increase their uneasiness, for example, when having to ask unfriendly personnel for directions or in case of interruptions during the actual job interview. Within EmpaT, we demonstrated that even minor changes in the virtual environment, such as changing the room’s wall color, may have a measurable effect on the user’s learning experience. The two studies revealed that designers of learning environments should be aware that even seeming insignificant attributes might have a significant impact on the learner. Another study shows the benefits that the EmpaT training can have for the preparing for employment interviews. Participants who participated in the training reported less interview anxiety, showed more appropriate nonverbal behavior, and had better interview performance.

Partners: Saarland University, I&O Psychology; University Augsburg Human Centred Multimedia; Charamel GmbH, TriCAT GmbH

TODO: TARDIS, INTAKT, SemProm, VirtualHuman