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  • Writer's pictureJemima Nash

Superbots Returns to MTS

We kicked off our Term 2 Industry Immersions with two electric days of Superbots with Glen Waverley Secondary College.

Young women in Years 7 to 9 joined us on-site at MTS to investigate common gender stereotypes and societal influences in the world of voicebot development. The students spent two days discovering the history of why voicebots often have female personas and then used this information to design their own unique voicebot. 

Students started by mapping the personality of their voicebot and determining its purpose and characteristics. They had to ask themselves - ‘Who is our audience?’ and ‘How can our voicebot assist them?’ So, the brainstorming began, with students developing questions around topics such as travel, friendship, medicine, and scheduling. 

To test the usability of their voicebots, students participated in ‘Wizard of Oz’ style testing where they pretended to respond as their voicebot. This allowed students to understand what may or may not be working in their conversational design and use this information alongside industry mentor feedback to refine their plan. 

Using Fabella software, students were then able to map their own voicebots interactions. This allowed them to determine how the voicebot could respond and continue conversations with the user.

Day two of Superbots saw students visually design their voicebot, taking into account design factors such as shape, colour and movement. Students sketched their designs, reflecting how colour represented the various emotion states of their voicebots. 

The designs were brought to life when students used the MTS-designed voicebot visualiser to create a moving representation of their voicebot. 

With support from our team and Monash University Faculty of IT mentors, students created voicebot designs that they were excited to engage with and share with each other. 

Throughout the whole voicebot development process, students engaged in short mentoring sessions with industry professionals from Versa Connects. These discussions allowed the students to gain feedback and refine their designs using advice from those currently working in the industry.

Students also participated in a lively Q&A session with our supporting industry mentors from Versa Connects, allowing them to ask specific questions about their industry and careers. The questions were meaningful, specific and insightful and were a great reflection of how engaged students were in the program.

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