Emotions and Teaching

AutoTutor is a program developed by Sidney D'Mello, a University of Notre Dame Assistant Professor of Psychology, Art Graesser from the University of Memphis, and a colleague from MIT. The program instructs a student in a subject using natural-language. At the same time it monitors the face and body of the student to determine her emotional state. It then changes the pacing and content of the instruction accordingly.

What's compelling is that the program was built to understand how a student's psychological state affects her cognitive state.

The researchers have found that in tests of over 1,000 students use of the AutoTutor resulted in students gaining approximately one letter grade.