The mission of the Online Education Initiative (OEI) is to help increase the number of students that can complete their educational goals by increasing access to and success in high-quality online courses. The California Community Colleges (CCC) OEI and Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) have paired to create a collaborative environment for faculty and students to increase student retention and success.  The current collaboration focuses on survey-level history and introductory statistics courses across the system and utilizes the Bazaar conversational agent to help augment group learning. CMU will help provide best practices and training for content deployment in Bazaar, and analyze the data to continue improving the tool. OEI and CMU will evaluate student data and look to introduce the design process across disciplines.


July 2016 – A team of faculty from across California teaching Introductory Statistics convened in June to develop lab activities that would incorporate the Bazaar tool. The team is currently rewriting a Normal Distribution lab from OpenStax College’s Introductory Statistics open textbook that members had currently used in their face-to-face classes (F2F). CMU/CCC are prepared to run a study with the next iteration of the course.

April 2016 – The first cohort ran through the Bazaar Spring 2016. At the time of this update, students had worked on activities such as reaction to the Declaration of Independence. Tweaking took place to ensure that the conversational agent helped students without coming in too early and shutting down conversation. The feedback process has also been tweaked.