A business school in Paris will soon begin using artificial intelligence and facial analysis to determine whether students are paying attention in class. The software, called Nestor, will be used two online classes at the ESG business school beginning in September.
The idea, according to LCA founder Marcel Saucet, is to use the data that Nestor collects to improve the performance of both students and professors. The software uses students’ webcams to analyze eye movements and facial expressions and determine whether students are paying attention to a video lecture. It then formulates quizzes based on the content covered during moments of inattentiveness. Professors would also be able to identify moments when students’ attention waned, which could help to improve their teaching, Saucet says.
At first, the technology will only be used for students who watch lectures remotely, though Saucet hopes to eventually launch an in-class version that would send real-time notifications to students whenever they’re not paying attention. Speaking to journalists during a demonstration at ESG’s Paris campus last month, Saucet said the technology could vastly improve the performance of students who take massive open online courses, or MOOCs.