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The Role of AI-Based Artifacts’ Voice Capabilities for Agency Attribution

2023-07-04 , Anuschka Schmitt , Naim Zierau , Andreas Janson , Jan Marco Leimeister

The pervasiveness and increasing sophistication of artificial intelligence (AI)-based artifacts within private, organizational, and social realms change how humans interact with machines. Theorizing about the way humans perceive AI-based artifacts is crucial to understanding why and to what extent humans deem these as competent for, i.e., decision-making, yet has traditionally taken a modality-agnostic view. In this paper, we theorize about a particular case of interaction, namely that of voice-based interaction with AI-based artifacts. The capabilities and perceived naturalness of such artifacts, fueled by continuous advances in natural language processing, induce users to deem an artifact as able to act autonomously in a goal-oriented manner. We argue that there is a positive direct relationship between the voice capabilities of an artifact and users’ agency attribution, ultimately obscuring the artifact’s true nature and competencies. This relationship is further moderated by an artifact’s actual agency, uncertainty, and user characteristics.

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How to Achieve Ethical Persuasive Design: A Review and Theoretical Propositions for Information Systems

2022-12-29 , Benner, Dennis , Schöbel, Sofia , Janson, Andreas , Leimeister, Jan Marco

Persuasive system design (PSD) is an umbrella term for designs in information systems (IS) that can influence people’s attitude, behavior, or decision making for better or for worse. On the one hand, PSD can improve users’ engagement and motivation to change their attitude, behavior, or decision making in a favorable way, which can help them achieve a desired outcome and, thus, improve their wellbeing. On the other hand, PSD misuse can lead to unethical and undesirable outcomes, such as disclosing unnecessary information or agreeing to terms that do not favor users, which, in turn, can negatively impact their wellbeing. These powerful persuasive designs can involve concepts such as gamification, gamblification, and digital nudging, which all have become prominent in recent years and have been implemented successfully across different sectors, such as education, e-health, e-governance, e-finance, and digital privacy contexts. However, such persuasive influence on individuals raises ethical questions as PSD can impair users’ autonomy or persuade them towards a third party’s goals and, hence, lead to unethical decision-making processes and outcomes. In human-computer interaction, recent advances in artificial intelligence have made this topic particularly significant. These novel technologies allow one to influence the decisions that users make, to gather data, and to profile and persuade users into unethical outcomes. These unethical outcomes can lead to psychological and emotional damage to users. To understand the role that ethics play in persuasive system design, we conducted an exhaustive systematic literature analysis and 20 interviews to overview ethical considerations for persuasive system design. Furthermore, we derive potential propositions for more ethical PSD and shed light on potential research gaps.

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Understanding the Design Elements Affecting User Acceptance of Intelligent Agents: Past, Present and Future

2022-01-04 , Elshan, Edona , Zierau, Naim , Engel, Christian , Janson, Andreas , Leimeister, Jan Marco

Intelligent agents (IAs) are permeating both business and society. However, interacting with IAs poses challenges moving beyond technological limitations towards the human-computer interface. Thus, the knowledgebase related to interaction with IAs has grown exponentially but remains segregated and impedes the advancement of the field. Therefore, we conduct a systematic literature review to integrate empirical knowledge on user interaction with IAs. This is the first paper to examine 107 Information Systems and Human-Computer Interaction papers and identified 389 relationships between design elements and user acceptance of IAs. Along the independent and dependent variables of these relationships, we span a research space model encompassing empirical research on designing for IA user acceptance. Further we contribute to theory, by presenting a research agenda along the dimensions of the research space, which shall be useful to both researchers and practitioners. This complements the past and present knowledge on designing for IA user acceptance with potential pathways into the future of IAs.

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Enhancing argumentative writing with automated feedback and social comparison nudging

2022-12 , Wambsganss, Thiemo , Janson, Andreas , Leimeister, Jan Marco

The advantages offered by natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning enable students to receive automated feedback on their argumentation skills, independent of educator, time, and location. Although there is a growing amount of literature on formative argumentation feedback, empirical evidence on the effects of adaptive feedback mechanisms and novel NLP approaches to enhance argumentative writing remains scarce. To help fill this gap, the aim of the present study is to investigate whether automated feedback and social comparison nudging enable students to internalize and improve logical argumentation writing abilities in an undergraduate business course. We conducted a mixed-methods study to investigate the impact of argumentative writing on 71 students in a field experiment. Students in treatment group 1 completed their assignment while receiving automated feedback, whereas students in treatment group 2 completed the same assignment while receiving automated feedback with a social comparison nudge that indicated how other students performed on the same assignment. Students in the control group received generalized feedback based on rules of syntax. We found that participants who received automated argumentation feedback with a social comparison nudge wrote more convincing texts with higher-quality argumentation compared to the two benchmark groups (p < 0.05). The measured self-efficacy, perceived ease of use, and qualitative data provide valuable insights that help explain this effect. The results suggest that embedding automated feedback in combination with social comparison nudges enables students to increase their argumentative writing skills by triggering psychological processes. Receiving only automated feedback in the form of in-text argumentative highlighting without any further guidance appears not to significantly influence students’ writing abilities when compared to syntactic feedback.

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Shared digital artifacts – Co-creators as beneficiaries in microlearning development

2023 , Marian Thiel De Gafenco , Tim Weinert , Andreas Janson , Jens Klusmeyer , Jan Marco Leimeister

Continuing vocational training benefits from the employees’ ability to share individual experience and expertise with their co-workers, as these assets constitute competitive advantages for companies. IT-supported systems can facilitate processes of knowledge elicitation (e. g. as part of collaborative co-creation) to ensure retainment of preferred qualitative characteristics of the resulting knowledge artifacts and provide ample opportunities to manage and configure a growing number of such artifacts in a company’s repository. It remains unclear however, how such collaborative and digital co-creation processes can benefit the individual co-creators’ expertise development. To address this gap in research and practice, an IT-supported co-creation system for microlearnings is designed and evaluated with master craftsman trainees of an inter-company vocational training center. With the deployment of the co-creation system, knowledge elaboration was examined via a qualitative evaluation of concept maps. By applying categories of the maps’ semantic properties and comparing features of expert knowledge derived from expertise research and concept mapping literature, we evaluate the process’ function to support expert knowledge elaboration as a desirable learning outcome for co-creators of shared digital artifacts. Analysis of the concept maps shows an absence of theoretical reasoning and an emphasis on contextual factors with minute details of work processes, indicating more practical than expert knowledge formation when co-creating shared digital artifacts. To improve the IT system’s effective support for expert knowledge elicitation, adjustments to the structured procedure are discussed and future research directions and limitations of this study are addressed.

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Vocational Training with Microlearning - How Low-Immersive 360-Degree Learning Environments Support Work-Process-Integrated Learning

2022-05-23 , Billert, Matthias Simon , Weinert, Tim , Thiel de Gafenco, Marian , Janson, Andreas , Klusmeyer, Jens , Leimeister, Jan Marco

In-company training is facing new challenges in preparing employees for the demands of digitalized and automated manufacturing. New training concepts like microlearning are necessary to support work-process-related learning. To handle the limitations of microlearning, we develop a 360-degree learning system to demonstrate a realistic work environment. Nonetheless, there is a lack of design knowledge supporting the motivation and performance of employees using the system. Based on a systematic literature review and semi-structured interviews, we have developed design requirements for interactive 360-degree learning environments. We used a workshop-based mixed-method approach with interviews, concept maps, and video analysis to evaluate the motivation and performance of precision mechanics within a prototypical work-process-oriented learning environment in an inter-company vocational training center. The results show a positive effect on learning outcomes and motivation. In addition, the ease of use and sense of presence while using the learning environment are rated as high. We contribute to theory by shedding new light on learners' motivation and performance within work-process-oriented interactive 360-degree learning environments. Furthermore, we offer guidelines for developing such interactive 360-degree learning environments.

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Gamifying Online Training in Management Education to Support Emotional Engagement and Problem-solving Skills

2022-09-28 , Schöbel, Sofia , Janson, Andreas , Leimeister, Jan Marco

Online training to improve problem-solving skills has become increasingly important in management learning. In online environments, learners take a more active role which can lead to stressful situations and decreased motivation. Gamification can be applied to support learner motivation and emotionally boost engagement by using game-like elements in a non-game context. However, using gamification does not necessarily result in supporting positive learning outcomes. Our analysis sheds light on these aspects and evaluates the effects of points and badges on engagement and problem-solving outcomes. We used an experimental approach with a fully randomized pre-test/post-test design of a gamified online management training program with 68 participants. The results demonstrate that points and badges do not directly improve problem-solving skills but are mediated by emotional engagement to positively influence problem-solving skills. Additionally, satisfaction with the gamification learning process positively relates to emotional engagement. Thus, when creating online training programs, it is essential to consider how to engage students and to think about the design of the learning environment. By identifying the limitations of gamification elements, the study’s results can provide educators with information about the design implications of online training programs for management learning.

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Charting the Evolution and Future of Conversational Agents: A Research Agenda Along Five Waves and New Frontiers

2023-04-20 , Schöbel, Sofia , Schmitt, Anuschka , Benner, Dennis , Saqr, Mohammed , Janson, Andreas , Leimeister, Jan Marco

Conversational agents (CAs) have come a long way from their first appearance in the 1960s to today's generative models. Continuous technological advancements such as statistical computing and large language models allow for an increasingly natural and effortless interaction, as well as domain-agnostic deployment opportunities. Ultimately, this evolution begs multiple questions: How have technical capabilities developed? How is the nature of work changed through humans' interaction with conversational agents? How has research framed dominant perceptions and depictions of such agents? And what is the path forward? To address these questions, we conducted a bibliometric study including over 5000 research articles on CAs. Based on a systematic analysis of keywords, topics, and author networks, we derive "five waves of CA research" that describe the past, present, and potential future of research on CAs. Our results highlight fundamental technical evolutions and theoretical paradigms in CA research. Therefore, we discuss the moderating role of big technologies, and novel technological advancements like OpenAI GPT or BLOOM NLU that mark the next frontier of CA research. We contribute to theory by laying out central research streams in CA research, and offer practical implications by highlighting the design and deployment opportunities of CAs.

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The Role of Design Patterns in the Development and Legal Assessment of Lawful Technologies

2022-10-20 , Dickhaut, Ernestine , Li, Mahei Manhai , Janson, Andreas , Leimeister, Jan Marco

Novel technologies such as smart personal assistants integrate digital services into everyday life. These services use personal data to offer personalized services. While they are subject to special data protection regulations at the time of development, there are few guidelines describing the transition from legal requirements to implementation. To reduce risks, services depend on external legal assessments. With developers and legal experts often missing either legal or technical knowledge, the challenge lies in bridging this gap. We observe that design patterns support both developers and legal experts, and we present an approach in which design patterns are leveraged to provide twofold value for both developers and legal experts when dealing with novel technologies. We conducted a revelatory case study for smart personal assistants and scaffolded the case interpretation through cognitive fit theory. On the basis of the findings, we develop a theoretical model to explain and predict the twofold value of design patterns to develop and assess lawful technologies.

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Improving Students Argumentation Learning with Adaptive Self-Evaluation Nudging

2022-11-11 , Wambsganss, Thiemo , Janson, Andreas , Käser, Tanja , Leimeister, Jan Marco

Recent advantages from computational linguists can be leveraged to nudge students with adaptive self evaluation based on their argumentation skill level. To investigate how individual argumentation self evaluation will help students write more convincing texts, we designed an intelligent argumentation writing support system called ArgumentFeedback based on nudging theory and evaluated it in a series of three qualitative and quaxntitative studies with a total of 83 students. We found that students who received a self-evaluation nudge wrote more convincing texts with a better quality of formal and perceived argumentation compared to the control group. The measured self-efficacy and the technology acceptance provide promising results for embedding adaptive argumentation writing support tools in combination with digital nudging in traditional learning settings to foster self-regulated learning. Our results indicate that the design of nudging-based learning applications for self-regulated learning combined with computational methods for argumentation self-evaluation has a beneficial use to foster better writing skills of students.