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Endowing a robotic tutor with empathic qualities: Design and pilot evaluation
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Information Technology, Division of Visual Information and Interaction. Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Mathematics and Computer Science, Department of Information Technology, Computerized Image Analysis and Human-Computer Interaction. (Social Robotics)
Mathematics and Computer Science, Heriot-Watt University, UK.
Department of Applied IT, University of Gothenburg, Sweden.
Department of Psychology, Vancouver Island University, Canada.
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2018 (English)In: International Journal of Humanoid Robotics, ISSN 0219-8436, Vol. 15, no 6, article id 1850025Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

As increasingly more research efforts are geared towards creating robots that can teach and interact with children in educational contexts, it has been speculated that endowing robots with artificial empathy may facilitate learning. In this paper, we provide a background to the concept of empathy, and how it factors into learning. We then present our approach to equipping a robotic tutor with several empathic qualities, describing the technical architecture and its components, a map-reading learning scenario developed for an interactive multitouch table, as well as the pedagogical and empathic strategies devised for the robot. We also describe the results of a pilot study comparing the robotic tutor with these empathic qualities against a version of the tutor without them. The pilot study was performed with 26 school children aged 10–11 at their school. Results revealed that children in the test condition indeed rated the robot as more empathic than children in the control condition. Moreover, we explored several related measures, such as relational status and learning effect, yet no other significant differences were found. We further discuss these results and provide insights into future directions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. Vol. 15, no 6, article id 1850025
National Category
Human Computer Interaction
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-368281DOI: 10.1142/S0219843618500251ISI: 000455592000002OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-368281DiVA, id: diva2:1267715
Funder
EU, FP7, Seventh Framework Programme, ICT-317923Swedish Research Council, 2015-04378Swedish Foundation for Strategic Research , RIT15-0133Available from: 2018-12-07 Created: 2018-12-03 Last updated: 2019-02-11Bibliographically approved

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Obaid, MohammadCastellano, Ginevra

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