“Learn with Agents” colMOOC Workshop

  • When: Friday, March 26, 2021, 09:10 CET (GR Time 10:10)

  • Where: Online (FREE workshop registration below)

The colMOOC Project

The ‘colMOOC' (collaborative MOOC) project is a EU Erasmus+ funded project with the objective to promote learners' interaction in prototype MOOC courses by integrating in MOOC platforms a kind of conversational agent that triggers learners' constructive dialogue by posing challenging questions.

There are two innovative design aspects in the colMOOC approach:

1) The agent is not meant to set up a conversation with a student-learner but, instead, to pose questions (or provide constructive tips) to chatting partners (dyads) and engage them in a more productive (‘transactive’) dialogue.

2) The agent interventions can be configured by the MOOC instructor. Thus, it becomes a flexible learning tool appropriate to be embedded in all MOOC courses through API connection of the colMOOC agent platform to the MOOC course platform.

The colMOOC project has test-bedded the agent-chat (and the relevant learning analytics component) in pilot MOOCs that has developed and offered several times during the project lifetime (2018-2021).

Additionally, the project has developed a Virtual Community of Practice where visitors can try the demo agent and have a first-hand experience of how the agent can be configured to intervene during students interaction.

Now, as the project completes its mission, the key project results will be presented in an open Workshop on Friday, March 26, 2021.

Invited Talks

Professor Carlos Delgado Kloos, Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, Spain

  • Title: We are not Alone: Smart Digital Collaboration in Education

  • Abstract: Education has an important social, collaborative component, because we are social beings. CSCL (Computer-supported collaborative learning) studies the learning that takes place when the social interaction among learners is mediated by interconnected computers. The computers and their interconnection through the internet are tools that serve the purpose of collaborative learning. But today and even more in the future, digital technology can be more than a tool that is waiting to be used like a bicycle that can be used as a tool to move around. With machine learning, digital technologies can acquire an agency that was reserved for humans in this way deeply influencing learning. Now the machine can become a reliable partner for collaboration in education. This opens up a number of very interesting avenues to facilitate and improve learning, but also some questions about the risks and dangers that have to be considered.

  • Short Bio: Carlos Delgado Kloos received the Ph.D. degree in Computer Science from the Technische Universität München and in Telecommunications Engineering from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid. He is Full Professor of Telematics Engineering at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid, where he is the Director of the GAST research group, Director of the UNESCO Chair on “Scalable Digital Education for All”, and Vice President for Strategy and Digital Education. He is also the Coordinator of the eMadrid research network on Educational Technology in the Region of Madrid. He is Senior Member of IEEE. He has been the Manager of ICT research projects at the Spanish Ministry and has carried out research stays at several universities such as Harvard, MIT, Munich, and Passau. His main research interests are in Educational Technology. He has been involved in a large number of projects with European, bilateral, national, and regional funding. He has published more than 500 articles in national and international conferences and journals and has further written a book and co-edited over a dozen. He has coordinated several MOOCs (on edX and MiríadaX).

Assistant Professor Viktoria Pammer-Schindler, Graz University of Technology, Austria

  • Title: Theory-driven dialogue design for reflective conversational agents

  • Abstract: Imagine an intelligent entity that helps YOU to reflect on yourself and your goals, on your experiences, on how to connect newly received knowledge to your existing ways of thinking. This is of course what good human teachers, coaches, and mentors can do. Can computers do that, too? This capability of conversational agents to guide through reflection by leading a reflective conversation is a different capability than seeming human, being able to induce human users to feel affect, or teaching factual knowledge (which is important, too!). In this talk, a blueprint dialogue structure for reflecting on a single experience with the goal to learn for the future, will be described. This dialogue structure has been developed based on reflection theory and two use cases in work-related learning. Further, the concept of reflection scripts will be introduced: I have started to build a framework for designers of reflective technology to think in a structured manner about what type of reflection is the goal of design, how to structure the connection between reflection and other human activities (macro scripts), and how to structure guidance through such reflection (micro scripts).

  • Short Bio: Dr. Viktoria Pammer-Schindler is an associate professor at Graz University of Technology and area head at the Know-Center. Her research is on designing and evaluating socio-interventions for workplace learning and knowledge work; and sits at the intersection of technology-enhanced learning, human-computer interaction and information system research. Viktoria is president of the International Alliance to Advance Learning in the Digital Era (IAALDE) and member of the European Association of Technology-Enhanced Learning (EATEL)’s managing committee.


colMOOC Workshop Program

More information about the colMOOC project

This project has been co-funded by the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Commission. This document reflects the views only of the authors, and the Education, Audiovisual and Culture Executive Agency and the European Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.