Kika Annette Arias

Kika Annette Arias
MIT Quest-Bridge | Undergraduate Research and Innovation Scholar
Advisor: Cynthia Breazeal
Department: EECS
Years: 2019-2020
Research Project Title:

Qualitative Analysis of Personalized Wellness-Based Interventions for Undergraduate Students

abstract:Our research team has developed a social robot that can deliver seven positive psychology based wellness interventions to college students in their dormitory rooms. A portable robot station that integrates an Android tablet and a Raspberry Pi has been designed to enable long-term deployments study outside of the lab. We hypothesize the college students’ psychological well-being will improve after interacting with the robot for seven daily sessions. The analysis on pre- and post-questionnaires shows that the overall well-being scores as well as five dimensions of Ryff’s Psychological Wellbeing scores improved after the particpants’ interacted with the robot. My work will examine patterns of behavior in students’ interactions with the social robot. These patterns will help support existing quantitative analysis, provide insight into student perception of the agent, and help determine why the robot had an impact on student well-being in some cases but not others. This analysis will also provide a basis for future design considerations for researchers seeking to develop interventions for improving psychological well-being.

"My main goal in life is to make technologies that provide greater access to personalized healthcare. A majority of my work has been from the lens of UX design; I've experimented with using robots and chatbots to deliver interventions and support for individuals. This project is a culmination of a two year research effort, and I’m incredibly excited to finally dive into the results and continue exploring how to improve the wellbeing of others!”