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Professor invents facial recognition system to monitor students, optimize teaching

(People's Daily Online)    16:05, September 12, 2016

A professor at Sichuan University has introduced a facial recognition system to monitor students in his class.

The system, invented by Professor Wei Xiaoyong of the university's computer science department, has been deemed a "magic device" by Wei's students. Among other things, it is able to analyze the effect of Wei's teaching.

In Wei's lab, a reporter got to examine the system at work, observing a video in which every student's face was marked with a yellow box. Each box was labeled as "happy" or "neutral," classifying the students' overall feelings.

Based on facial expressions, Wei is able to know when students are the most active, and when they need more interaction to stay engaged. Long-term monitoring of 324 students revealed that academic performance may be proportional to the level of students' activity in class.

Wei Xiaoyong

"The facial expressions tells me which teaching methods are most easily understood and accepted," Wei confirmed.

The system has also been used to study relationships between students. By recording the students' interactions with others, the system tells Wei whether an individual pupil is an introvert or an extrovert.

"In the future, expressions will be divided into more categories, which will allow us to do more analysis," Wei said. In addition to maximizing the efficacy of teaching, the system can be employed in many other fields.

“For example, a camera installed in front of an advertisement can analyze the effect of the advertisement by capturing the expressions of the public," Wei offered. 

(For the latest China news, Please follow People's Daily on Twitter and Facebook)(Editor: Hongyu,Bianji)

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