Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California

UC Irvine

UC Irvine Previously Published Works bannerUC Irvine

Going to School on a Robot: Robot and User Interface Design Features that Matter


Telepresence robots have recently been introduced as a way for children who are homebound due to medical conditions to attend their local schools. These robots provide an experience that is a much richer learning experience than the typical home instruction services of 4–5 hours a week. Because the robots on the mar- ket today were designed for use by adults in work settings, they do not necessarily fit children in school settings. We carried out a study of 19 homebound students, interviewing and observing them as well as inter- viewing their parents, teachers, administrators, and classmates. We organized our findings along the lines of the various tasks and settings the child is in, developing a learner-centered analytic framework, then teacher-,classmate-, and homebound-controller-centered analytic frameworks. Although some features of current robots fit children in school settings, we discovered a number of cases where there was a mismatch or additional fea- tures are needed. Our findings are described according to analytic frames that capture user experiences. Based on these user-centered findings, we provide recommendations for designing the robot and user interface to better fit children using robots for school and learning activities.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View