Transparency, teleoperation, and children's understanding of social robots

Kory Westlund, J. M., & Breazeal, C. (2016). Transparency, teleoperation, and children’s understanding of social robots. In S. Sabanovic, A. Paiva, Y. Nagai, & C. Bartneck, Proceedings of the 11th ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction: The 11th Annual Human-Robot Interaction Pioneers Workshop, (pp. 625-626). IEEE.


Teleoperation or Wizard-of-Oz control of social robots is commonly used in human-robot interaction (HRI) research. This is especially true for child-robot interactions, where technologies like speech recognition (which can help create autonomous interactions for adults) work less well. We propose to study young children's understanding teleoperation, how they conceptualize social robots in a learning context, and how this affects their interactions. Children will be told about the teleoperator's presence either before or after an interaction with a social robot. We will assess children's behavior, learning, and emotions before, during, and after the interaction. Our goal is to learn whether children's knowledge about the teleoperator matters (e.g., for their trust and for learning outcomes), and if so, how and when it matters most (e.g. at what age).

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