Physical Media as Active Social Learning Agents

Physical Media as Active Social Learning Agents
Led by The Late Cliff Nass

What if the thing being created takes the role of an active social agent in the creative experience itself and can increase engagement for learning?



The broad, long-term objectives of our study are to develop the theory and principles necessary to design new physical media that can take an active social role in creating highly motivating K-12 learning experiences. Our specific research aim is to explore how the social behavior of mechatronic media affects a creative K-12 mechatronics learning experience.

Specifically, we hypothesize that a mechatronic media component exhibiting social back-channeling behavior will lead to improved learning experiences compared to standard non-social media components.

To explore this, we developed a 2x2 between-participants laboratory experiment with (N=68) high-school students.

We specifically examined how agent expressions of relational interest affected perceptions and learning outcomes depending on the agent’s locus of agency.

We found evidence that a shift from external to embedded agents can positively influence learning processes and outcomes while not affecting perceptions of the agent.

Team:
The Late Cliff Nass, Nik Martelaro and Malte Jung

More Information:
View Project Summary
View Project Report

See more of Cliff's great work on our "Remembering Cliff Nass Page"

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