A4 Conference proceedings

Case: Telepresence robot – virtual, but actively present teacher in a prototype laboratory

Open Access publication

Publication Details
Authors: Kasurinen Marko, Ikävalko Markku, Tuimala Lauri, Virkki-Hatakka Terhi, Hyneman Jamie
Publication year: 2020
Language: English
Title of parent publication: ENGAGING ENGINEERING EDUCATION, SEFI 48th annual conference proceedings
Start page: 869
End page: 880
Number of pages: 12
ISBN: 978-2-87352-020-5
JUFO-Level of this publication: 1
Open Access: Open Access publication

Nowadays, globalization is actively present in higher education. It includes global mobility of both people and knowledge. Research groups are international, and the mobility of students and teachers is continuously increasing. Technology enables us to interact over distances. This is good for the development of science and humanity. Impending climate change forces us to seriously think about the climate impact of air travel, for example. Meetings and lectures can be quite easily arranged virtually, but work done in laboratories usually requires an on-site teacher.

In this paper we present a case of building and testing a telepresence robot at J. Hyneman Center, LUT University, Finland. There are several commercial telepresence robot manufacturers, and devises are produced for various needs, e.g. for working in hazardous environments. We are building a relatively simple telepresence robot that can act as a substitute or a kind of avatar for a physically distant teacher in a prototype laboratory. This device is built as a student project by using common and inexpensive components.

The aim of the paper is 1) to present briefly the building process of the device and 2) to present the first user experiences of the device in a prototype laboratory environment, from the standpoint of the both students and teachers. We also discuss the pros and cons of this kind of telepresence-related co-creation in engineering education. By doing so, we prove that the era of telepresence teaching in laboratories has already begun.

Last updated on 2020-03-12 at 12:04