Dan Peterson

Recent Posts

College chatbots are revolutionizing communication with students

Posted by Dan Peterson on July 1, 2016

By now you’ve no doubt heard about chatbots. In fact, you’re probably talking to one already on your smartphone (Hey Siri!) to help you make hands-free calls, get map directions, search for information on the internet, set reminders, schedule meetings … perhaps even order tacos, flowers, and more.

And you’ve likely read that Apple isn’t alone in betting big on chatbot technology. In April Facebook announced that bots can now be employed on Messenger, allowing companies a new opportunity to engage with nearly 1 billion Messenger users. Microsoft, Google, and IBM are all investing heavily to develop their own bots in the race for supremacy of the ever evolving Digital Age.

But what you might not know is that chatbots aren’t an exclusive, expensive space reserved only for global tech and media giants. In fact, the aforementioned big boys are diving into a space driven by messaging apps like WhatsApp, Slack, Kik, WeChat and others.

These companies capitalize on the idea that conversational interfaces provide better and more natural experiences for users. It’s a simple but powerful premise: People prefer to just say or type what they want and have it happen, rather than wind through a series of menus and fill out endless forms with the same personal info over and over again.

So how do colleges fit into this equation? Glad you asked. The rise of conversational user interfaces, coupled with the access to millions of students provided by popular platforms like SMS text messaging and Facebook Messenger, means that colleges that adopt chatbot technology have the means and the opportunity to communicate effectively with many students at once. Feel free to request a demo if you're interested in seeing how colleges are using chatbots.

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Topics: chatbot, colleges, chatbots, messaging, texting

AdmitHub launches first college chatbot with Georgia State

Posted by Dan Peterson on May 17, 2016

To view of the results of the randomized control trial with Georgia State University click here: Case Study and Research Results


AdmitHub Launches First College Chatbot with Georgia State University

BOSTON -- May 17, 2016 -- Boston-based edtech startup AdmitHub has launched a text-message-based chatbot to help new Georgia State University students successfully transition to college.

“Pounce,” namesake of the GSU Panthers’ mascot, is the first university chatbot of its kind in the U.S. AdmitHub is the only company specializing in chatbots for higher education enrollment management and student persistence.

Pounce engages in conversations with incoming Georgia State students to guide them through key steps, such as filing the FAFSA, applying for housing, and registering for classes.

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Topics: Georgia State, chatbot, partners, press release

What are chatbots and why are they suddenly taking center stage?

Posted by Dan Peterson on March 29, 2016

A chatbot (or chatterbox or talking robot) is a computer program that’s designed to carry out a conversation with an actual person. While chatbots are popping up all over the place lately -- from your smartphone to starring roles in Hollywood -- they aren’t new. In fact, chatbots predate the Internet. The first one, ELIZA, was created in 1966 by Joseph Weizenbaum at MIT’s Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. Designed to mimic a psychotherapist, ELIZA is still around today to listen to you talk about your feelings and ask you a ton of questions.

So why are chatbots suddenly going mainstream now?

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Topics: chatbot