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Improving Behavioral Training Using a Robot Simulation

Improving Behavioral Therapy Training Using the NAO robot" with Ellie Kazemi


Dr. Ellie: So we've been doing some research where kids with self-injury for example, have to be across from the therapist who does these assessments. It's difficult to teach these assessments with real children, whereas the robot self-injures without real injury.

Victor: We had to learn how to program. We had to learn how to observe behaviour even better than it was required for the job. So to a whole different level.

Christina: As soon as I heard Dr. Kazemi was working with simulated clients that were exhibiting problem behavior of a child, I totally jumped on the project and wanted to join lab.

Michelle: And then also for ethical reasons we're able to use the robot to tackle research questions that we may not otherwise be able to tackle.  

Dr. Ellie: So if you think of the interaction of a child and a caregiver, if I'm giving them performance feedback, the child may also behave differently under those conditions. So you don't know if the feedback is affecting the child or the therapist that you're working with. Whereas, with the robot, he's not affected by the feedback that I provide the participants. I'm able to study how to give that feedback to be effective.

Vahe: You kind of start testing the capacity of the robot and what you're able to do with him. And then you start sparking new ideas, so it's a lot of thinking about creative ways to go around doing specific things, so it's really fun. 

Lance: I like to think that it does have a personality, like with the research we've been conducting looking into human robot interaction. We've definitely been including emotional aspects.

Robot: "I want cars"

Michelle: Okay, here you go. 

[Robot makes car noises]

Michelle: I'm going to read over here, you play with that.

 Dr. Ellie: I hope the future of this line of research, is that other people will see the utility, because there's so many questions we could answer. So I'm hoping that it will stimulate some interest elsewhere and other people will begin to study using the robot.

 Are you interested about having the NAO robot? ask for a price quote request.

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  • May 24, 2018 10:02:08 AM

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