To better communicate with students, some campuses are exploring the use of chatbots. A chatbot is a service, powered by rules, that a person interacts with via a chat interface. There are two types of chatbots, one functions based on a set of rules, and the other more advanced version uses machine learning. In very advanced versions artificial intelligence can drive the system and improve answers and service over time. Many chatbots are presented to customers in a user-friendly format such as a virtual agent that creates an experience that resembles a real-life interaction in a store or office.
For higher education, chabots and virtual agents present possibilities for improving student services by engaging them in spaces where they may be more familiar and comfortable. The growth in messaging applications outside of social media platforms suggests that students may utilize chatbots or virtual agents to help them navigate the processes and requirements for them to succeed at their institutions.
Inside Higher Ed | September 6, 2019
Chatbots have started to infiltrate every corner of higher ed -- from admissions to student affairs, career services and even test prep. Is that a good thing?