After analyzing how VR experiences are modeled within human computer interaction (CHI) we have found there is a deep theoretical gap. Similarly to how the scientific community has defined CHI models for multimedia applications, it would be very important to have such models for VR—obviously the standpoint cannot be the same because multimedia and VR applications differ in essence. Indeed, there is no formal model to unify the way in which scientists and designers of VR applications define their experiences. More specifically, apart from the isolated initial scheme defined by S.R. Ellis (Ellis, 1991, Computing Systems in Engineering, 2(4) 321–347; Ellis, 1993, Pictorial Communication in Virtual and Real Environment, 3–11), and a low level model defined by Latta and Oberg (Latta & Oberg, 1994, IEEE Computer Graphics & Applications, 14, 23–29), there is no model to fully describe the relationship with which the user will be experiencing the VR application.
In this paper we shall explain where exactly we think this gap is found, which elements and concepts are involved in the definition of a model of experience, and finally propose a definition of a model that we think, eventually, will fill this gap.