Project centered around building an AI-based teaching assistant chatbot (Photo by: N. Sheth)
On Friday, March 31, the AI Chatbot Project Team presented at NCSA as part of the UIUC 2023 Engineering Open House. This project is centered around building an AI-based teaching assistant (currently focused on electrical engineering courses). Students utilizing this chatbot will be able to ask a free-form question and the assistant will return a relevant course-specific answer. This answer can include relevant course slides, excerpts from the text book, and any notes that have been provided by the instructor.
The team explained chatbots to everyone from 4th graders, to incoming college students, to PhDs asking about advanced tools and techniques. Feedback from guests at the EOH was very positive. Those who tested it out were fascinated by the information they were able to pull up from a simple question. One highlight includes an Electrical Engineering Sophomore who tried asking questions from a course that the assistant had not been trained on. The answers were not specific to the more advanced class but the student agreed the answer was relevant and commented the assistant was a great tool to learn faster.