I’ve been writing this blog for over 3 years now and have written almost 900 posts. It therefore stands to reason that from time to time things I have been predicting would come true.
On May 31st 2011, I wrote a blog post called Watching the Student. In it I said this:
One of the big problems in online education is the lack of feedback the teacher gets from their students during online sessions. In a classroom you can see the faces and can therefore gage their interest level but you can’t online easily. This technology would help with that. Just about every laptop sold these days has a camera so why not use it for that?
Facial Analysis Software Spots Struggling Students (H/T Technologyreview.com)
A recent study from North Carolina State University shows how this might work. Researchers there used video cameras to monitor the faces of college students participating in computer tutoring sessions. Using software that had been trained to match facial expressions with different levels of engagement or frustration, the researchers were able to recognize when students were experiencing difficulty and when they were finding the work too easy.
This is just the beginning.