Educational Robotics in Brooklyn

AAAI Conferences

We describe a number of efforts to engage university students with robotics through teaching and outreach. Teaching runs the gamut from undergraduate introductory computer science to graduate-level artificial intelligence courses. Outreach involves collaborations between students and New York City public school classrooms. Our efforts have always involved team-based projects that culminate in demonstrations or competitions, usually based on challenges from RoboCupJunior. Several research projects have followed from these initiatives.


Educational Robotics in Brooklyn

AAAI Conferences

We describe a number of efforts to engage university students with robotics through teaching and outreach. Teaching runs the gamut from undergraduate introductory computer science to graduate-level artificial intelligence courses. Outreach involves collaborations between students and New York City public school classrooms. Our efforts have always involved team-based projects that culminate in demonstrations or competitions, usually based on challenges from RoboCupJunior. Several research projects have followed from these initiatives. Here, we relate some lessons learned and outline new research avenues that we are pursuing to overcome some of the issues.


The ARTSI Alliance: Using Robotics and AI to Recruit African-Americans to Computer Science Research

AAAI Conferences

The mission of the ARTSI (Advancing Robotics Technology for Societal Impact) Alliance, a consortium of 19 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and 9 major research universities (R1s), is to enlarge the nation’s engineering and science talent pool by increasing the number of students from underrepresented groups who pursue advanced training in computer science. ARTSI is one of several alliances funded by the National Science Foundation’s Broadening Participation in Computing Program. ARTSI focuses specifically on institutions serving African Americans and uses robotics education to attract and engage students. In this paper we describe the activities comprising ARTSI, our vision of a robotics curriculum for CS undergraduates, and ways to integrate robotics modules into existing CS courses.


Undergraduate Capstone Projects on Multi-Robot Systems

AAAI Conferences

Santa Clara University's Robotic Systems Laboratory has developed a highly successful robotics-based undergraduate education program that provides a wide range of learning experience relating to computer science and engineering fundamentals. A key element of this program is the senior capstone experience, a yearlong project that is typically hands-on, interdisciplinary, and team-based. These projects provide a comprehensive educational environment by exposing students to the breadth of engineering, all phases of a development cycle, and the challenges of managing a group enterprise. Over the past four years, a number of these projects have made significant contributions to the Lab's research program in multi-robot systems, ranging from the development of key testbeds to the execution of significant experimental demonstrations. This article reviews the Santa Clara program, presents specific undergraduate contributions to our multi-robot research program made by senior capstone students, and details some lessons learned regarding the value of such roboticsoriented work in an undergraduate educational environment.


Using Robot Competitions to Promote Intellectual Development

AI Magazine

The three competitions--(1) AAAI Mobile Robot, (2) AUVS Unmanned Ground Robotics, and (3) IJCAI RoboCup--were used in different years for an introductory undergraduate robotics course, an advanced graduate robotics course, and an undergraduate practicum course. Based on these experiences, a strategy is presented for incorporating competitions into courses in such a way as to foster intellectual maturation as well as learn lessons in organizing courses and fielding teams. The article also provides a classification of the major robot competitions and discusses the relative merits of each for educational projects, including the expected course level of computer science students, equipment needed, and costs. The sponsorship of such competitions ranges from local clubs of enthusiasts to large professional organizations, such as the American Association for Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), which sponsors the annual AAAI Mobile Robot Competition and Exhibition as part of its annual ...