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Healing Potential Of Virtual Reality: Part 2 - Virtual Embodiment

Saturday, June 16, 2018, 10:00 AM until 2:00 PM
NewPathVR HQ
1062 Folsom St.
San Francisco, CA  94103
Bruce F Pither
(415) 694-0254
CE Workshops
Registration is required
Payment In Advance Only

Healing Potential of Virtual Reality:
An Introduction to VR Psychology Workshop

Part 2 - Virtual Embodiment

Host:               NewPathVR

Date:               Saturday, June 16

Time:              10:00 am - 2:00 pm

CE Credits:     3.5 hrs (Pending approval)

Participants:   Maximum:  15
Location:        NewpathVR HQ - 1062 Folsom St., San Francisco, 94103  

$55. per person (+ $15. for CE credits) for SFPA and SCCPA members

$65. Per person (+ $15. for CE credits) for non-members


“There is some level of the brain that doesn’t distinguish between reality and virtual reality. A typical example is, you see a precipice and you jump back and your heart starts racing. You react very fast because it’s the safe thing for the brain to do. All your autonomic system starts functioning, you get a very strong level of arousal, then you go, ‘I know it’s not real’. But it doesn’t matter, because you still can’t step forward near that precipice."

         Dr. Mel Slater, VR Researcher

         University of Barcelona

Workshop Description: In this workshop participants will learn and experience first-hand the healing potential of virtual reality as a tool for psychological repatterning and self-healing through embodiment in a virtual space.

A refresher course will be offered free of charge between 9am-10am for those who would like a brush-up tutorial around using the hardware or could not attend Part 1. Note: The refresher course is not a replacement for Part 1 (Intro to VR). For those with strong interest in using VR therapeutically we strongly encourage attending Part 1 before Part 2.

Disclaimer:  In a small number of people (up to 3% of the population according to one Harvard professor) virtual reality has been associated with adverse physical reactions, such as nausea or what can be intense anxiety. Instructors will review safety precautions with students prior to use. By signing up for this workshop, you agree to waive all claims, and hold NewpathVR and the San Francisco and California State Psychological Associations harmless, in respect of personal injury that you might suffer or cause to others as a result of your participation in the workshop.


9:00                    Refresher Course

9:45                    Registration

10:00 am       Welcome + Didactic Presentation (Neuroscience)

10:30 am            Q&A

10:45 am        Break-out into two groups:

Experiential Embodiment Exercise (without VR)  

Experiential Embodiment Exercise (in VR)

Noon                   Lite lunch

12:30 pm            Switch Groups

1:30   pm            Group process

2:00   pm            Doors close


Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Dell Visor WMR, Samsung GearVR, Google Daydream, Google cardboard.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to embody avatars and experience and process emotions, sensations, and ineffable experiences through them in Tiltbrush

Bio of Facilitator:

Michelle Wang, PsyD (

Michelle is an Emotional Intelligence (EQ) coach and traumatologist. She holds a doctorate in clinical psychology and has been trained in state-of-the-art clinical settings including VA medical centers, centers for survivors of torture, and center for survivors of genocide. For the last decade, Michelle has specialized in the treatment of anxiety, depression, and PTSD. With her extensive research and clinical background, Michelle has been an international trauma consultant for various disaster-relief organizations, assisting with the development of a somatic, body-centered treatment protocol aimed to mitigate the effects of PTSD in school-aged children. Michelle has advanced training in Attachment Theory, Somatic Psychotherapy, Jungian Psychology, Mindfulness and Meditation, Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT), Relational and Interpersonal frameworks, Psychedelic-Assisted Therapies, and Time-Limited Psychodynamic Therapy (TLDP). She is co-founder of NewPathVR.


Catherine Hamilton-Giachritsis, Domna Banakou, Manuela Garcia Quiroga, Christos Giachritsis, Mel Slater (2018)  Reducing risk and improving maternal perspective-taking and empathy using virtual embodiment. Scientific reports 8:  1. Feb.

B S Hasler, B Spanlang, M Slater (2017)  Virtual race transformation reverses racial in-group bias PLoS ONE 12:  4. e0174965.

Freeman, D., Reeve, S., Robinson, A., Ehlers, A., Clark, D., Spanlang, B., & Slater, M. (2017). Virtual reality in the assessment, understanding, and treatment of mental health disorders. Psychological medicine, 47(14), 2393-2400.

Falconer, C. J., Slater, M., Rovira, A., King, J. A., Gilbert, P., Antley, A., & Brewin, C. R. (2014). Embodying compassion: a virtual reality paradigm for overcoming excessive self-criticism. PloS one, 9(11), e111933.

Cheung, K. L., Tunik, E., Adamovich, S. V., & Boyd, L. A. (2014). Neuroplasticity and virtual reality. In Virtual Reality for Physical and Motor Rehabilitation (pp. 5-24). Springer New York.

Madary, Michael, and Thomas K. Metzinger. 2016. "Real Virtuality: A Code of Ethical Conduct. Recommendations for Good Scientific Practice and the Consumers of VR-Technology." Frontiers in Robotics and AI 3 (3). doi: 10.3389/frobt.2016.00003

Other recommended readings:

Author: Jaron Lanier

Title: Dawn of the New Everything: Encounters with Reality and Virtual Reality

Author: Jeremy Bailenson

Title: Experience on Demand


CPA is co-sponsoring with SFPA. (pending approval) The California Psychological Association is approved by the American Psychological Association to sponsor continuing education for psychologists. CPA maintains responsibility for this program and its contents. 


Important Notice: Those who attend the workshop and complete the CPA evaluation form will receive 3.5 continuing education credits (pending approval). Please note that APA CE rules require that we only give credit to those who attend the entire workshop. Those arriving more than 15 minutes after the start time or leaving before the workshop is completed will not receive CE credits.


Attendance certificates will be emailed, please make sure your email address is entered accurately.  Thank you.