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New technologies, alongside the communication habits of our Generation Z students, are forcing companies, institutions, and universities to adapt. The way universities listen and respond to students’ feedback, questions, and problems requires a more nuanced and proactive approach than simply having an FAQ on a website or a telephone number to call during business hours. As universities strive to meet the needs of students in our 24/7 culture, NYU’s Office of Student UX, Technology, & Engagement explored how technology might help us augment and scale the support we provide. BobChat — an interactive, conversational chatbot on Facebook Messenger — helps students navigate NYU 24 hours a day meeting students where they are. Each question asked helps BobChat learn and grow, with a team of students ready to help process questions the technology might not understand yet. More than just showcase what we’ve done, this session will break down steps for how to make a chatbot for your office, your division, or even your entire university — meeting students where they are and answering questions and accepting feedback 24 hours a day.
Presented at the Annual HighEdWeb Conference in Sacramento, California in October 2018. The presentation won the prestigious Best Presentation in Track "Red Stapler" Award.