Kick - off meeting of the EDUBOTS project
The kick-off meeting of the EDUBOTS project (Best practices of pedagogical chatbots in higher education) took place on January 15, at the Startup Campus, Oslo, Norway. The EDUBOTS project, which is funded by the European Commission, is composed by seven partners (EdTech Foundry, Anna & Hubert Labs, the University of Leeds, the University of Zagreb, RISE CoE, the University of Granada, and Riga Technical University) in seven countries (Norway, Sweden, UK, Croatia, Cyprus, Spain and Latvia).
Cyprus was represented by RISE CoE (http://www.rise.org.cy/
) who has a leading role in examining the state-of-the art in educational chatbots and understanding the users and has a major contribution in piloting the project’s chatbots in higher-education student populations.
Dr. Andri Ioannou (Assistant Professor at the Cyprus University of Technology and leader of the EdMedia group of RISE) is the local coordinator of EDUBOTS and Dr. Olia Tsivitanidou (Postdoctoral Researcher at RISE - EdMedia) acts as project manager and main researcher from RISE.
Other people involved in the project are Dr. Loizos Michael (Associate Professor at the Open University of Cyprus and leader of the Socially-Competent Robotic and Agent Technologies group of RISE), Prof. Panayiotis Zaphiris (Professor at the Cyprus University of Technology and member of the EdMedia group), Dr. Yiannis Georgiou (Postdoctoral Researcher at RISE - EdMedia) and Dr. Antigoni Parmaxi (Postdoctoral Researcher at the Cyprus University of Technology - Cyprus Interaction Lab).
The project aims to make a state-of-the-art analysis of the use of pedagogical chatbots in university’s settings, then pilot two different chatbots in courses across different countries and create a community of educators, sharing their experience and practice in the field. Specific challenges which will be addressed in the first pilots, involve the lack of social interaction and proper integration of freshmen in the university environment as well as lack of information about the quality of educators’ teaching quality in a formative manner.
The kick-off meeting began with an introductory presentation by Gregor Jarisch (project coordinator) and Lars Willner (EdTech Foundry CEO) providing an overview of the project, as well as, the vision and strategy of the company in relation to the chatbots’ development.
Then, presentations by all partners took place, providing insights on the project’s work packages, including tasks’ planning and implementation.
The EDUBOTS European project is expected to be completed by the end of October 2021. The official website of the project will be announced soon.
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