Attachment and sense of presence in a virtual environment

Helene S. Wallach, Marilyn P. Safir, Idan Almog

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study is the first to investigate the connection between attachment categories and presence in Virtual Reality (VR) environments. Participants (99) completed an attachment questionnaire, experienced Virtual Reality Exposure (VRE) in a virtual airplane, and completed a presence questionnaire. Twenty-seven participants neglected to look at the virtual window, and reported lower levels of presence. A significant negative correlation between presence and avoidance was found. The correlation between presence and anxiety was not significant. Ethnicity (Jewish/non-Jewish) was found to be an intervening variable. A significant difference between levels of presence of attachment categories was found for participants who viewed the window: those in the Safe category reported the highest levels of presence, followed by the Anxious-Ambivalent group, the Dismissive-Avoidant group, and finally the Fearful-Avoidant group. Our results suggest there is a connection between one's avoidance level and his/her attachment type and ability to experience the VRE as real and vivid.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-217
Number of pages13
JournalVirtual Reality
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2009


  • Anxiety
  • Attachment
  • Avoidance
  • Culture
  • Presence
  • Virtual reality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design


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