Magnifying time: Examining the Multimodal Microdynamics of Parent-Child Social Interaction and Early Word Learning

Chen Yu (University of Indiana Bloomington)
Practical information
03 October 2019

ENS, room L363/365, 24 rue Lhomond, 75005 paris


Interacting embodied agents, be they groups of adult humans engaged in a  coordinated task, autonomous robots acting in an environment, or a  mother teaching a child, must seamlessly coordinate their actions to  achieve a collaborative goal. Inter-agent coordination depends crucially on external behaviors by the participants where the behavior of one  participant organizes the actions of the other in real time. In this talk, I will review a set of studies using a novel experimental paradigm  in which we collected high-density multimodal behavioral data (including  eye tracking, motion tracking, audio and video) in parent-child interactions. We compared and analyzed the dynamic structure of free-flowing parent-child interactions in the context of language learning, and discovered the characteristics of multimodal behaviors from parents and children, that are informatively time locked to words and their intended referents and predictive of word learning. I will  conclude by discussing how high-density micro-level behaviors data lead to tangible opportunities in understanding human cognitive systems and in building artificial intelligence systems.