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Vietnamese college student creates English-teaching robot

Friday, November 02, 2018, 21:29 GMT+7
Vietnamese college student creates English-teaching robot
Nguyen Tran Thanh Phong’s robot. Photo: Tuoi Tre

A student at a major college in Ho Chi Minh City has spent months creating an English-teaching robot, and went on to think of a futuristic school where all teachers are robots shortly after his efforts yielded success.

The robot by Nguyen Tran Thanh Phong, a senior from the Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology and Education, uses a number of programs for lessons, exercises and possible conversations with learners.

It is able to move arms, take the roll, recognize the human face and say learners’ name to elicit their responses, which can be given through the machine’s touch screen and a wireless microphone.

A child talks with Nguyen Tran Thanh Phong’s robot via a wireless microphone. Photo: Tuoi Tre
A child talks with Nguyen Tran Thanh Phong’s robot via a wireless microphone. Photo: Tuoi Tre

It can also react to students’ attitude and answer by an expressive face, while a large screen fixed on the robot’s front shows what it is teaching.

The robot can do lesson review, teach vocabulary and grammar and provide in-class exercises to facilitate on-the-spot practice and memorization, but it only handles a very small class now.

The robot’s creator said he will improve the machine so that it can work in a wider space and interact better with users.

The product is inspired by what Phong is passionate about.

“I taught English and really love learning English. I’m also keen on robotics and invention. That’s why I thought of trying a combination of these two interests,” he said.

His wish is strong and may pose a job threat to some people teaching English.

“My ambition is to have an English language school where only robots teach.”

Nguyen Tran Thanh Phong’s robot is tested. Video: Tuoi Tre

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Thai Xuan / Tuoi Tre News

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