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New facial analysis tech knows when students are struggling in class

Published Jul 2nd, 2013 11:59PM EDT
Facial Analysis Technology Students

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It’s just what you always wanted when you were a kid: A computer that tracks your every facial move and lets your teacher know when you’re struggling with a given assignment. Technology Review reports that researchers at North Carolina State University have been using computers’ cameras to watch students’ emotional states in an effort to help teachers understand when they’re having difficulty with a particular problem. NC State researcher Joseph Grafsgaard tells Technology Review that his goal with the project is to help struggling students “bolster their confidence and keep them motivated” so that they don’t fall behind their peers. The report also notes that this sort of research is part of a broader trend of “affective computing” projects that “measure skin conductance” or “assess voice tone or facial expressions” to record users’ emotional states.

Brad Reed
Brad Reed Staff Writer

Brad Reed has written about technology for over eight years at and Network World. Prior to that, he wrote freelance stories for political publications such as AlterNet and the American Prospect. He has a Master's Degree in Business and Economics Journalism from Boston University.