How strong is your social/emotional intelligence? Not sure? Feel free to test your skills at Lab in the Wild or at Berkley’s Body Language Quiz. Both of these tests are designed to test your ability to identify people’s affective states. The ability to read the emotions of others is an important skill for teachers. It allows us to identify problems, know when to rephrase and add context, and do a variety of other things that help us to keep students and audiences better engaged. So what happens when robots gain these skills? Moreover, what happens when
“future assistive robots, enhanced with deep learning and virtually omniscient access to information, [are made available to ] replace the (current) 3.5 million full-time-equivalent elementary and secondary school teachers and the 1.3 million post-secondary teachers in the U.S?”
This is just one of the many questions asked by Amara D. Angelica in her recent Kurzweil Blog Post “Will this new ‘socially assistive robot’ from MIT Media Lab (or its progeny) replace teachers?” In her post, she introduces us to Tega, a cellphone powered, socially-assistive robot capable of sensing the emotional state of learners and using the emotional cues to create personalized motivational strategies.
I have posted a couple videos below to better introduce you to Tega and the amazing work being done by Cynthia Breazeal, PhD, and her team of Researchers in the Personal Robots Group at the MIT Media Labs.