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Impact of Biophilia Attributes on Student Satisfaction Level: Using Virtual Reality Simulation



"Can green learning spaces and spaces indirectly connected to nature help increase student satisfaction in learning? The impact of biophilia attributes on student satisfaction using virtual reality simulations is the main topic of discussion in Mahrous, Dewidar, Refaat, and Nessim's research (2023)."



Research on the impact of Virtual Reality (VR) technology that is carried out with fundamental methods and learning simulations is always an interesting topic to discuss. This time, research on VR comes from higher education, namely "The Impact of Biophilia Attributes on Student Satisfaction Levels: Using Virtual Reality Simulation" by Mahrous, Dewidar, Refaat, and Nessim (2023). At the same time, VR becomes an intermediary or support for the alignment of biophilia attributes and students in higher education. When the lecture environment becomes an arena for student competition, VR becomes a solution to answer it.


Odar, Refaat, and Nessim's research (2023) aimed to identify biophilia design attributes that could potentially contribute to increasing student satisfaction levels. Thus, effective learning can be realized through student satisfaction in learning. Many studies have focused more on the environmental aspects of biophilic design. According to the biophilia hypothesis, humans are naturally attracted to the natural environment, and being disconnected from it would jeopardize their physical, psychological and social health. Interestingly, this study shows that biophilia attributes significantly impact students' learning motivation in the context of satisfaction.


Furthermore, the study relies heavily on experimental research methods, namely simulation methodology, which includes using VR as the main simulation tool. This study investigates the room's performance in terms of students' satisfaction level and cognitive performance through biophilia attributes. The British University in Egypt was chosen as the experimental site to test the biophilia design identifying the results. Students who participated in the experiment had to be at least in their 3rd or 4th year to be familiar with architectural elements. They also had to be in relatively good emotional and physical condition to participate.


Through the biophilia attributes in the VR simulation, Mahrous, Dewidar, Refaat, and Nessim's (2023) research came to fruition. First of all, the design of biophilia significantly impacts the satisfaction level and vital perception of the students. Since biophilia design is closely related to nature, the VR simulation shown to the students was a semi-open learning space. The second result was that natural lighting, natural ventilation, the presence of greenery, large windows, and indirect connection to nature produced the highest percentage of positive impact on students' satisfaction levels on campus. 


The simulation of biophilia design in VR in Mahrous, Dewidar, Refaat, and Nessim's (2023) study also mentioned that these elements put students in a relaxed atmosphere and provide an opportunity to focus more on specific tasks. However, some participants argued that the sounds of nature interfered with focus in learning. Finally, almost all students agreed that air ventilation is the most important in increasing learning motivation. This increased learning satisfaction will lead to better quality physical and mental health.


So, what are the conclusions and benefits of Mahrous, Dewidar, Refaat, and Nessim's (2023) research? The conclusion is that biophilia design strongly impacts student learning satisfaction levels. This statement has been proven based on students' experience at the British University in Egypt. However, the level of satisfaction can be improved by emphasizing or adding key attributes of biophilia in the learning space. In addition, this research can be a reference for educational facility designers in designing educational facilities by considering biophilia attributes that can potentially increase student satisfaction levels.


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