Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science In Aviation Human Factors



First Advisor

Deborah Carstens

Second Advisor

Meredith Carroll

Third Advisor

Neil Ganey


Virtual Reality (VR) is no longer just for training purposes. The consumer VR market has become a large part of the VR world and is growing at a rapid pace. In spite of this growth, there is no standard controller for VR. This study evaluated three different controllers: a gamepad, the Leap Motion, and a touchpad as means of interacting with a virtual environment (VE). There were 23 participants that performed a matching task while wearing a Samsung Gear VR mobile based VR headset. Measures of performance, preference, presence, and enjoyment were collected and compared across controller. Overall, it was seen that Leap Motions performance effected its other scores and was the least preferred controller. The touchpad resulted in the highest presence scores without notable performance issues. However, the gamepad was the most preferred controller based on its ease of use and pre-established history with users. Based on the results of this study, recommendations for VR companies and developers were made as well as areas of future research to further improve the user experience of consumer VR.


Copyright held by author

Included in

Aviation Commons