We report on an exploratory study conducted at a graduate school in Sweden with a humanoid robot, Baxter. First, we describe a list of potentially useful capabilities for a robot teaching assistant derived from brainstorming and interviews with faculty members, teachers, and students. These capabilities consist of reading educational materials out loud, greeting, alerting, allowing remote operation, providing clarifications, and moving to carry out physical tasks. Secondly, we present feedback on how the robot’s capabilities, demonstrated in part with the Wizard of Oz approach, were perceived, and iteratively adapted over the course of several lectures, using the Engagement Profile tool. Thirdly, we discuss observations regarding the capabilities and the development process. Our findings suggest that using a social robot as a teaching assistant is promising using the chosen capabilities and Engagement Profile tool. We find that enhancing the robot’s autonomous capabilities and further investigating the role of embodiment are some important topics to be considered in future work.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited