What will you be doing?
The HART group focuses on the human-centered development of social Artificial Intelligence to enhance performance and well-being, e.g. by supporting motivation, situation awareness, knowledge, decision-making and collaboration.
For projects that develop personalized ePartners for child and family education, we are looking for master students who will fulfill their internship on a specific research topic (preferably for their thesis). Among other things, the project builds forth on knowledge acquired during the European PAL project (https://doi.org/10.3389/frobt.2019.00118).
The overarching aim of the projects is to develop a “family” of ePartners that assist children and their educators (e.g., parents, teachers, pediatricians) in education (child’s age 6-14 years). The ePartner can be a social robot (e.g. a Nao-robot) and/or a virtual agent that supports child’s learning process with educative games as a knowledgeable playmate or buddy. Furthermore, the ePartner informs the educators for progress monitoring and supports their involvement in goal setting and overcoming learning obstacles. Education can be focusing on specific health management topics (e.g. for children with diabetes), or more generic skills such as language and math (e.g. for children in developing countries). Important research challenges are:
- To establish personalized guidance that supports enduring engagement and motivation.
- To support parents, teachers and/or pediatricians in a responsible and effective way (a.o. respecting child’s privacy and autonomy).
- To develop a user model that monitors progress and, when desired, provides feedback, explanations and referrals for support.
- To develop and implement an ePartner informing-questioning-answering model and memory that result in successful ePartner-child conversations (i.e., the foundation for sharing experiences, and personalized feedback and explanations).
- To cope with diversity in main language and language skills.
TNO provides expertise in the areas of human-agent/robot interaction, behavioural change, child-health care, cognitive engineering, personalization, user testing, mobile computing and computer science. You will be working on one of these areas and dependent on your expertise and time for this project you will have a focus on software and/or ontology engineering, programming, user modeling, interaction and/or persuasive-technology design, behavioral-change assessments and/or user-experience evaluations.
What do we require of you?
Depending on the focus of your project we expect more social science (e.g., psychological) or more computer science (e.g., programming) oriented activities from you. We expect that you're proficient in English, creative, analytical, independent and have an interest in working with children.
What can you expect of your work situation?
TNO is an independent research organisation whose expertise and research make an important contribution to the competitiveness of companies and organisations, to the economy and to the quality of society as a whole. Innovation with purpose is what TNO stands for. With 3000 people we develop knowledge not for its own sake but for practical application. To create new products that make life more pleasant and valuable and help companies innovate. To find creative answers to the questions posed by society. We work for a variety of customers: governments, the SME sector, large companies, service providers and non-governmental organisations. Working together on new knowledge, better products and clear recommendations for policy and processes. In everything we do, impact is the key. Our product and process innovations and recommendations are only worth something if our customers can use them to boost their competitiveness.
What can TNO offer you?
You want to work on the precursor of your career; an internship gives you an opportunity to take a good look at your prospective future employer. TNO goes a step further. It’s not just looking that interests us; you and your knowledge are essential to our innovation. That’s why we attach a great deal of value to your personal and professional development. You will, of course, be properly supervised during your internship and be given the scope for you to get the best out of yourself. Naturally, we provide suitable internship compensation.
Has this vacancy sparked your interest?
Then please feel free to apply on this vacancy! For further questions don’t hesitate to contact us.
Due to Covid-19 and the consequent uncertainties and restrictions, students who are not residing in the Netherlands may currently not be able to start an internship or graduation project at TNO.
Note that applications via email and third party applications are not taken into consideration.
Contact: Willeke Vught, van
Phone number: +31 (0)88-86 61448