Backchanneling in Human-Robot Interaction

Women sitting infront of robot. There are 8 different pictures with different poses of the women.
Bliek, A. (2020). Backchanneling in Human-Robot Interaction. University of Groningen.

Backchanneling feedback is the verbal or non-verbal information that is given by the listener during a conversation. It is a key aspect of human conversation and is used for a variety of reasons, e.g. showing attention or contributing to a more fluent conversation. In recent years, the effect of a robot’s backchanneling while listening to a human has been investigated. But the effect of backchanneling by a human when listening to a robot has been studied poorly.

A first study about human backchanneling while listening to a humanoid robot has been conducted (Bliek et al., 2020) looking at the backchanneling cues gaze, gestures and pause. The study found that pauses have a significant influence on the backchanneling behavior of the human listener and that backchanneling behavior differs significantly when listening to a robot or a human.

To further investigate the backchanneling behavior when listening to a robot and to investigate the influence of the humanoid robot, we suggest repeating the experiment with another humanoid robot, in this case, the Nao robot.

More information can be found here.

M.Sc. Adna Bliek

Research Associate

Department of Electrical-Electronic-Communication Engineering
Chair of Autonomous Systems and Mechatronics