Most people are beginning to realize that our educational system is struggling. Students aren’t performing well, teachers are over-burdened by strict curriculums, and standardized tests seem to be exacerbating the problem. To solve this, many innovators have turned to technology to improve student engagement and performance. Unfortunately, we’re beginning to see that this may not work as well as we hope—students simply don’t learn by pure memorization. Rather, students need peer-to-peer interaction to truly retain and master what they’re being taught.

Fortunately, researchers at the Personal Robots Group are creating a way to solve this problem. To create peer-to-peer interaction among students learning from a robot, researchers have found that using expressive voices and body language can create the illusion of peer-to-peer interaction.

The result of this is that students who have expressive robotic teachers are able to better retain and recall the information that they are being taught. More research is needed into this unique concept, but perhaps this is a way to lessen the burden on teachers, while improving outcomes for students around the world.