Chatbots in Higher Education
Online Conference
June 22nd

Welcome to join us for the first Edubots Conference, the programme and registration are now live!

The event is open for anyone, it's free, and you should definitely join for a fun and inspiring event! It is designed for Educators in Higher Education, and hopefully you will leave the day smiling and feeling motivated. You will also learn about easy to use tools and methods that you can apply in your teaching & learning practice.

Scroll down to register and view the conference program.

Together, we are exploring the future role of chatbots in Higher Education, and we are inviting you to join us!

(By registering you will also be sent the recording in case you can't attend)
Research survey for Educators in Higher Education 
The Edubots project is researching best-practice use of chatbots in HE, and we will highly appreciate your input and feedback on some potential user cases. Could we ask you for 5 minutes of your time to fill out this survey?

Conference program (Central European Time)

Conference room opens 9.30

WELCOME 10.00 

Introduction to Edubots, and the conference, by consortium leader Lars Willner. 

10.15-11.15 Chatbots in education...really?!

The keynote session is hosted by Edubots partner, Andri Ioannou from CYENS (Cyprus), where she will facilitate a conversation with Prof. Wegerif from Cambridge University (UK), and Senior Researcher Asbjørn Følstad from SINTEF (Norway). They will share their thoughts and vision for the future role of chatbots in education.

Prof. Wegerif leads the new initiative DEFI "Digital Education Futures Initiative" and his work focus on the role of dialogue and technology in learning. Asbjørn Følstad is a senior research scientist in the area of Human-Computer Interaction, currently involved in a multi-year project called "Chatbots4Loyalty". We hope this will be an inspiring and thought-provoking start to the conference.

Abstract: Edubot adventures in dialogic space, by Prof. Rupert Wegerif
Can Edubots support the sort of educational dialogues which expand student's minds? I will look at the arguments against this and challenge them with stories from the history of edubotics and my own experiences of supporting educational dialogues with technology over thirty years. I will outline what research has to say about the mechanisms by which we learn from educational dialogues with a view to proposing design principles for edubots. My particular focus is on the role of edubots in stimulating, widening and deepening the quality of dialogue in online communities of practice.  

Abstract: Towards successful chatbots? What research can teach us, by Asbjørn.
Chatbots are increasingly taken up, for a range of purposes. For information and support, for guidance and coaching, and for socialization and relationship formation. Through interactions in natural language, chatbots represent opportunities not provided in other types of user interfaces – as an intuitive and low-threshold means of accessing information and services. At the same time, successful chatbot deployment depends on identifying relevant user cases and providing good user experiences through efficient and engaging interactions. The keynote will discuss opportunities in chatbots, as well challenges, and provide a research-based view on what it takes to make users take up and benefit from this technology. The point of departure is insight on chatbots in general, but this will be linked to how chatbots may be deployed in the education domain.

11.15 -12.00 Exploring the student journey with chatbot glasses on
PhD fellow Marita Skjuve from SINTEF
"From start to finish; Chatbots supporting students through their student journey" 
Followed by 15 minutes Q&A


13.00 - 14.00 CHATBOTS IN ACTION
JJ Merelo from University of Granada "Using telegram bots in class", 
Jenni Whitfield from University of Leeds "Can chatbots help humans break the ice?"
Followed by 15 minutes  Q&A

Session curated by Dr. Wayne Holmes, Unesco Consultant on AI in Education. 
Dr.Wayne Holmes "Ethical considerations of Chatbots" 
Myles Blaney from Edinburgh University "A bot journey"
Chris Dixon from Lancaster University "Introducing Ask LU – Aiding you on your student journey"
Followed by 15 minutes Q&A  

Gregor Jarisch from Differ.Chat & E.D.D.I "The art of building likable chatbots"
Loizos Michael from CYENS (Cyprus) "Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning in Chatbots"
Another speaker is to be announced shortly. 
Followed by 15 minutes  Q&A  

16.00 - 16.15 
Concluding remarks and end of conference

June 23-25: Post-conference workshop: Chatbot Hackathon 

Participants in this Shared Task Workshop will experiment with building chatbots using the EDDI platform.
(Postponed due to illness) Post-conference online workshop: Adapting to national varieties and dialects 
Participants in this Shared Task Workshop have collected a sample corpus of a national variety or dialect of a language; then applied data mining and text analytics to compare their national sub-corpus with other varieties or dialects, to identify features of the national variety which distinguish it from the other varieties.


Edubots is an ongoing Erasmus+ Knowledge Alliance, funded by the European Commission for 2019-2021. We welcome all Educators in Europe to join our learning community to participate in the project activities and make use of the research, free learning resources and free tools.