Robots are being introduced into South Australia’s primary and secondary school curriculums as part of a three year research program being led by Swinburne University of Technology.
Two South Australian schools per term will trial robots in the classroom and teachers will complete online surveys about how the tech is being used to educate students and encourage class engagement. They will also be asked about the challenges of using robots in the classroom.
“Robots are becoming a part of society. It is the responsibility of Australian schools to prepare their students with the skills needed for the future,” Lead researcher, Swinburne’s Dr Therese Keane said.
There’s currently no body of research that examines how robots can assist teachers and students. The research program is hoping to identify a “best practice” to improve education.
“We want the robots to improve classroom learning, not simply be a novelty or distraction,” Keane said.
There has been a push to teach kids coding and programming in Australia schools, led by some of the country’s top tech execs like Atlassian’s Mike Cannon-Brookes. Keane says these robots can be programmed to talk, dance and move.
“Coding has been identified as a necessary skill for the next-generation of workers. These robots give the students an accessible and fun way to practice and improve their coding skills,” Keane said.