Int. J. of Learning Technology   »   2014 Vol.9, No.1

 

 

Title: Users' preference for and perception of animated pedagogical agents

 

Author: Kyle R. Cheney

 

Address: Department of Learning Sciences & Technology, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, 100 Institute Road, SL315, Worcester, MA 01609, USA

 

Abstract: This study investigates the effect that ethnicity and gender have on participants' preference for and perception of animated pedagogical agents (APAs). Ratings of four agents, an African-American male and female and a Caucasian male and female were collected from 120 workers on Mechanical Turk. Results indicated that users did not prefer or more highly rate agents who were identical to themselves, contrary to the similarity hypothesis. Instead, the results indicated and interaction between the ethnicity and gender of the agent and the ethnicity and gender of the participants. This interaction followed research on teacher evaluations. This suggests that beliefs held by participants about ethnicity and gender may offer more insight into students' perceptions about APAs than their own characteristics.

 

Keywords: animated pedagogical agents; APAs; individual differences; learning technology; human-computer interaction; HCI; learning environment design; user preferences; user perceptions; animated agents; ethnicity; gender; teacher evaluation.

 

DOI: 10.1504/IJLT.2014.062448

 

Int. J. of Learning Technology, 2014 Vol.9, No.1, pp.53 - 66

 

Available online: 04 Jun 2014

 

 

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