Bolton College | Ada

Ufi first met Ada in 2018 during the VocTech Seed funding call - a testbed for early ideas

Ada is the name of an AI-driven campus digital assistant developed by Bolton College, which aims to support teachers and students by providing information as quickly and clearly as possible at the time of need.

In Ada’s early days, work focused on providing answers to students’ common queries: timetable and college information, and important updates. Teachers could access student information without filtering and sorting data – saving valuable time.

The immediate impact of Ada’s success was that students could get all the information they needed in the palm of their hand, and teachers spent less time on tasks that would take them away from doing their main vocational tasks.

Since her first introduction to the college three years ago, Ada’s capabilities have been increasing.

Recent developments have been focusing on supporting teachers and students in a post-Covid college environment

From September 2020, a version of Ada will be available to educators across the UK. The college is launching the ‘Ada Goes To School’ platform which will enable teachers to set up their own subject chatbots and incorporate commonly asked questions from their own students.

The solution Ada brings with her in saving valuable time for teachers won’t be compromised because the development of subject topics is built on a crowdsourcing model where any number of subject teachers can contribute to the development of the conversations students engage with – there could be 1,000 engineering teachers all supporting the build of an Engineering Level 3 chatbot.

Subject topics will be built on a crowdsourcing model where any number of subject teachers can contribute to the development of the conversations students engage with.

So, there could be 1,000 engineering teachers all supporting the build of an Engineering Level 3 chatbot. Harnessing the power of the crowd will increase the number of contextualised questions that Ada can answer, saving more valuable time for teachers