The Impact of Video Game Modality on Grit and Immersion


Adam Ray

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D)


Educational Psychology

Date of Award

Spring 2022


This dissertation aimed to explore the relationship between grit, immersion, and medium in a sample of college students interacting with a computer video game. Namely, that immersion is a predictor of grit. The term “immersion” as operationalized here means the computer system’s technological capacity to deliver a vivid experience that removes the user from physical reality. Immersive technology, which includes augmented reality, mixed reality, and virtual reality, is increasingly popular. Growing out of a need to explain behaviors and perceptions with regard to task persistence as a function of grit, the use of immersive technology represents a methodological approach to grit that has yet to be examined. To test this, participants were randomly assigned to play a horror game in either VR or on a 2D screen, then completed measures regarding grit, immersion, perceived level of fear, and difficulty, as well as demographic items. The hypothesis was partially confirmed, as immersion and components of grit were significantly higher in the VR version compared to PC. The relationships found between these variables not only highlight differences between VR versus 2D with respect to immersion, but have advanced our understanding of the grit trait. Further limitations and future directions are also discussed.


Stephen Reysen

Subject Categories

Education | Educational Psychology