Work Sample

Here's a sample of my research and design work over the years — from studies and briefs, to design strategies and pilot testing videos. 

Each sample provides a description and a link for you to explore. For a deeper look, check out my resume or CV.

 

I'd love to answer any questions you have too! Reach me at layne.hubbard@colorado.edu

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June 2021, Research Study

Child-Robot Interaction to Integrate Reflective Storytelling Into Creative Play 

I led the design and implementation of this research, adapting the study to safely reach families during COVID-19. I playtested with 33 children ages 4–5 years old as they conversed with a stuffed animal robot to tell stories about their creative play. I used qualitative data analysis techniques to categorize the ways that children responded to the robot's prompts — and developed design strategies to support diverse communication needs. I then wrote and published our findings in the ACM Conference on Creativity & Cognition.

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June 2021, Video Presentation

Child-Robot Interaction to Integrate Reflective Storytelling Into Creative Play

I created a 5-minute video presentation to share our research and design strategies with a community of designers and researchers at the ACM Conference on Creativity and Cognition. I share Takeaways including Design Goals and Children's Approaches to reflective storytelling with a conversational agent. Watch the 5-minute video here.

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July 2021, Research Study

Voice Design to Support Young Children's Agency in Child-Agent Interaction

Using my data collection from the previous study — with 33 children ages 4–5 years old — I conducted qualitative thematic analysis on my semi-structured interviews with children and their parents, as well as quantitative language analysis on the child-robot interaction transcripts. From the interview data, I discovered ways to support children's playfulness, agency, and control when interacting with a conversational agent. I submitted our findings to the ACM Conference on Conversational User Interfaces. 

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December 2016, Design Testing

Piloting a Conversational Agent Using a Phone and a Stuffed Animal

I conducted a pilot test of a child-robot interaction, wherein the robot asks questions to help kids tell stories about their creative play. I used the Wizard-of-Oz protocol to test the interaction with a pair of siblings — ages 7 and 4 years old — and gathered initial playtest insights for our design thinking iterations. I interviewed the children about their experiences, then created this video to share with our research and design team. Watch the 4-minute video here

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December 2016, Design Testing

Iterating on our Design with a Multilingual Character Agent

As a result of children's feedback in my initial pilot testing and co-design session, I iterated by implementing our prototype in Vietnamese to engage with a 7-year-old and her 4-year-old brother. In this co-design session, we use the Wizard-of-Oz protocol to implement the zebra character in both English and Vietnamese — and share their stories with their parents! Watch the 2-minute video here

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March 2018, Research Brief

Toward Intelligently Augmented Interactions in Highly Variable Early Childhood Environments

 

I conducted exploratory research with 19 children ages 2–7 years old to understand how child-agent interaction might support the highly variable communication needs of early childhood. I designed an open-ended question-and-answer model, then tested it with children in home and school environments, and finally performed quantitative language analysis to understand the range of children's communication patterns. I published our findings in the ACM Conference on Intelligent User Interfaces in Tokyo, Japan.

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March 2018, Research Brief

Reflective Inquiry through Scaffolded Storytelling for Low-Income and Multilingual Early Childhood Communities

 

I used my experience as a preschool teacher to design an interactive robotic object (IRO) for child-robot storytelling. I visited preschools and homes to develop and test the conversational model, then demoed our prototype at the ACM Conference on Human-Robot Interaction — where our team won 2nd prize! Read the 2-page paper here

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April 2018, Design Testing

Supporting Sibling Co-Play and Independent Play During Child-Agent Interaction

 

To understand how a stuffed animal character might support sibling and family dynamics, I piloted a conversational agent using the Wizard-of-Oz protocol with a 3-year-old and 4-year-old. Through Q&A conversation, the robot deepened creative play through interactive storytelling and supported shared play experiences among siblings. Watch the 3-minute video here

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Read 20+ Recommendations from

Professors, Technologists, Co-Workers, and Preschool Parents

While applying to an Early Childhood Innovation Accelerator, my professors, mentors, co-workers, and preschool parents wrote recommendations for me and my work using the entrepreneurial networking site, f6s. Scroll down to the bottom of my profile and read their 20+ recommendations