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Virtual Reality for Spatial Navigation.

Immersive virtual reality (VR) allows its users to experience physical space in a non-physical world. It has developed into a powerful research tool to investigate the neural basis of human spatial navigation as an embodied experience. The task of wayfinding can be carried out by using a wide range of strategies, leading to the recruitment of various sensory modalities and brain areas in real-life scenarios. While traditional desktop-based VR setups primarily focus on vision-based navigation, immersive VR setups, especially mobile variants, can efficiently account for motor processes that constitute locomotion in the physical world, such as head-turning and walking. When used in combination with mobile neuroimaging methods, immersive VR affords a natural mode of locomotion and high immersion in experimental settings, designing an embodied spatial experience. This in turn facilitates ecologically valid investigation of the neural underpinnings of spatial navigation.

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