The idea behind Educational Robotics is to use robots as pedagogical tool in order to interest young people for science and technology. Furthermore, the goal is to foster technical and social skills by applying an educational robotics approach on a broad scale.
Graz University of Technology (TU Graz) is engaged in Educational Robotics since 2007 and constitutes the intersection between top-level university research (in the area of robotics/Artificial Intelligence) and education (children, school students, teachers, university students).
Research focuses, activities and support actions at a glance:
Educational Robotics Activities and Support Actions
TU Graz focuses on support measures and activities across three dimensions (age/school level, experience, content/extent) in order to provide a continuous support and to cover a large spectrum – from pre-school children to secondary school students, from beginners to experts and from basic to special topics.
- robotics/Artificial Intelligence (AI) workshops for school classes (apointment arrangements via email)
- regular Robotics Club TU Graz for children and young students
- robotics/AI research camps and summer-research weeks for young people
- Robotics Challenge for bachelor students
- teacher training courses (2 courses per year – robotics and AI for beginners and experts/special topics)
- integration of robotics, AI and computer science in the Teacher Training Programme ‘Computer Science’
- scientific accompanying research (i.e. empirical evaluation of the impact of educational robotics)
- community building (i.e. OCG work group) and cooperation with schools and further educational institutions (i.e. Kinderbüro)
Education in Artificial Intelligence
Artificial Intelligence (AI) already plays a major role in our daily life (e.g. intelligent household appliances like robotic vacuum cleaners or AI-based applications like Google Maps, Google Now, Siri, Cortana, . . . ). Sound knowledge about AI and the principles of computer science will be of vast importance for future careers in science and engineering. Looking towards the near future, jobs will largely be related to AI. In this context literacy in AI and computer science will become as important as classic literacy (reading/writing). By using an analogy with this process we developed a novel AI education concept aiming at fostering AI literacy (fundamental topics of AI – see picture above). The concept comprises modules for different age groups on different educational levels (from kindergarten to university).
RoboCupJunior is an educational project, that promotes local, regional and international robotic events for young students. It is designed to interest young people in science and technology using robots. Graz University of Technology is involved in the organization of the annual robotics competition RoboCupJunior Austrian Open and assists young people, teachers, and schools in this endeavor. Activities range from short robotics introduction courses over training courses for teachers and the rental of robotics kits to schools and further educational institutions.
Institute for Software Technology
Graz University of Technology
Inffeldgasse 13, Floor 5
8010 Graz, Austria