Elin Björling

Autumn 2017

Project EMAR: Designing a Social Robot Design Challenge


UW Seattle: HCDE 496/596

UW Tacoma: TIAS 499 (or contact Dr. Rose)

3, CR/NC
Wednesdays, 12–1:15 p.m.
UW Seattle: Sieg 420

UW Tacoma: MDS 312


Today’s teens will most likely be the first generation to spend a lifetime living and interacting with robots. Although there is a great deal of research in human-robot interaction, including focusing on specific age groups such as children and seniors, little work directly looks at teen-robot interaction.

Project EMAR is an NSF funded project using a human-centered approach to design and deploy an autonomous social robot to live in a high school. The focus of the robot is to help teens and schools understand and manage teen stress. Learn more about Project EMAR.

Our focus: Designing a design challenge

Building on our previous year's work where we conducted a series of design sessions with teens and created several low fidelity prototypes, we are going deeper to understand how teens might design a robot to live in their school. To do so, we are developing a participatory design project where teens will prototype a robot to live in their school.

In Fall quarter, the DRG will plan a design research competition to engage 6 local high schools. This work will entail designing an experience for the design challenge (which will run in Winter quarter). We will craft an experience for the design challenge that including videos, online content, social media messaging, and educational modules. We will follow the HCD process as we does so: developing prototypes, evaluating the emerging designs with users, and iterating based on their feedback.

We anticipate that this project will yield a set of high quality materials that showcase design and design process that students can use in their professional portfolios.

Our team

The team is led by Dr. Elin Björling, HCDE, a stress researcher who studies adolescents and Dr. Emma Rose, UW Tacoma Assistant Professor in Writing Studies and UX researcher.

Interested students

We are looking for dedicated enthusiastic UW students at all levels (undergrad to doctoral) to help with this project. We will be limiting this DRG to a small number of participants. Students will be expected to register for at least 3 credit hours. We are interested in students who want to enroll in this DRG in Fall 17 and would like to continue in Winter 18. This project is open to students from both UW Seattle and UW Tacoma campuses.

The DRG participants will meet weekly. Seattle and Tacoma teams will meet on their respective campuses and participate in a teleconference.

You should apply if you are interested in design pedagogy, psychology, UX design, working with teens, and social robots.

Specifically, we are looking for students who have a combination of the following skills:

  • Deep understanding of the HCD design process
  • UX research
  • Visual design
  • Social media and content strategy
  • Video editing
  • Educational design

If you are interested in applying, please complete this form