Date of Award

Fall 11-28-2017

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Software Engineering


Software Engineering and Game Design and Development

Committee Chair/First Advisor

Paola Spoletini

Second Advisor

Rongkai Guo

Third Advisor

Chao Mei


Contemporary Virtual Reality (VR) technologies offer an increasing number of functionalities including head-mounted displays (HMD), haptic and sound feedback, as well as motion tracking. This gives us the opportunity to leverage the immersive power offered by these technologies in the context of requirements elicitation, especially to surface those requirements that cannot be expressed via traditional techniques such as interviews and focus groups. The goal of this thesis is to survey uses of VR in requirements engineering, and to describe a method of elicitation using VR as a tool.

To validate the methodology, a research plan is developed with a strong empirical focus. According to this plan, after an identification of VR technologies in the market, the most appropriate hardware and software is selected for experimentation based on the degree of immersion. An experiment is designed and conducted for gathering landmarks for a navigational system (e.g., buildings, point of interest,), in addition to distance and time, to provide directions to users. The experiment aims to: gather these tacit components of the navigational system, and gather the usability of VR methodology compared to other traditional elicitation methods. Overall, this research will clarify and understand the usability of VR in a requirements elicitation setting. The methodology will be useful when highly immersive VR technologies - currently expensive for consumers - will become available at limited costs, and a more widespread exploitation will be possible for requirements elicitation.