TRinE Paper: Mobile Telepresence Robots in Education: Strengths, Opportunities, Weaknesses, and Challenges
Perifanou, M.; Economides, A. A.; Häfner, P. and Wernbacher, T. (2022). Mobile Telepresence Robots in Education: Strengths, Opportunities, Weaknesses, and Challenges. In: Educating for a New Future: Making Sense of Technology-Enhanced Learning Adoption, Proceedings of EC-TEL 2022, 17th European Conference on Technology-Enhanced Learning, 17: 573-579, Berlin
A mobile telepresence robot (MTR) is a semi-autonomous robot whose movement and interaction with its surrounding environment is controlled by a person from a distance. In education, MTR enable learners or educators to virtually participate in a class from a distance. TRinE: Telepresence Robots in Education is an EU project that aims at providing an interactive toolkit to support educators, learners, and others in order to integrate MTR in education. During January and February 2022, project’s partners conducted a qualitative study to collect the experiences and views of educators, learners, and other stakeholders (i.e., administrators, technical support staff, librarians) regarding the use of MTR in education across Austria, Germany, Greece, France, Iceland, Malta, and USA. A total of 19 persons were interviewed and 66 persons participated in 12 focus groups discussions. The findings describe interviewees’ experiences with MTR in education as well as the views of interviewees and focus groups’ participants with regard to pros, cons, and recommendations of using MTR in education. These findings may help educational policy makers, educational institutes officials, educators, and others to efficiently integrate MTR in education.