Work-in-Progress-Virtual Agents in Teaching: A Study of Human Aspects

Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
Proceedings of 6th International Conference of the Immersive Learning Research Network, iLRN 2020, 2020, 00, pp. 259-262
Issue Date:
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© 2020 Immersive Learning Research Network. Students require human intelligence and social interaction in the form of academic assistance at different times of their study period. Their desire to get and find academic assistance varies and is dependent on many factors such as attendance mode, personal situation, semester timetables, and assessment due dates. Providing students with access to this expertise when it is needed and to large numbers of students is problematic. Virtual Agents (VAs) seek to provide a technology-enabled social element to encourage and provide timely support to aid students' learning. We have implemented 4 unit-specific VIRtual Teaching Assistants (VIRTAs) across 2 universities to provide support to answer student's questions about various aspects of the unit. In this work-in-progress paper, we present the usage patterns of students to show how many questions were asked by students and at what point of time in the semester the questions were asked addressing the desire to find assistance when required from VIRTA.
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