Monday, December 23, 2019

URSP Student Jessica McDonough Collects Data on Students Behavior towards STARSHIP Delivery Robots on George Mason Campus

I am currently a senior Psychology student who has been working as a research assistant in human factors/applied cognition labs for the past two years, and this is where my interest in the interaction between humans and technology was sparked. When the Starship robots were first introduced on campus last semester, I knew they would provide a unique opportunity for study. While formal data collection is now underway, I could tell from my own personal empirical observations that data collected from this would yield interesting results about students’ behaviors and attitudes towards the delivery robots.

I am primarily carrying out this study as a part of the Psychology department’s honors program where in it I am completing an undergraduate thesis project. It is my hope that I will be able to use this data to help complete my thesis as well as for use in future projects in graduate school.

At this stage, I am still enrolling participants in the experiment and meeting up with them to set up their experiment accounts that we will be collecting their longitudinal data with. The bulk of what I am doing now is managing the proper collection of this data and it is expected that preliminary analysis will begin later in the semester, and will hopefully be completed by the end of this semester or the beginning of the next. I definitely expected data collection for this project to be more passive than it is. Correct longitudinal collection that is in line with the IRB’s stipulations requires an active role and lots of double checking.