Collaborative Development of Conversational Agents

  • Type: Seminar (S)
  • Semester: SS 2021
  • Place:


  • Start: April 2021
  • Lecturer:

    Dr. Ulrich Gnewuch

  • SWS: 3
  • Lv-No.: 2500043
  • Information: Online

Course Description

This course focuses on the design, development, deployment, and evaluation of conversational agents (e.g., chatbots or voice assistants) for a given problem domain (e.g., customer service, team collaboration). The aim of the course is to introduce conceptual and technical foundations of conversational agents, relevant theories of human-computer interaction, and design guidelines for different classes of conversational agents. In addition, the course will introduce the human-centered design approach adapted to the design of conversational agents, including several qualitative and quantitative evaluation approaches.

The entire course is held virtually with no physical meetings, providing a first experience for future workplace scenarios. The course is a joint offering together with Saarland University (Prof. Stefan Morana) and Technische Universität Dresden (Prof. Benedikt Brendel). Students will work collaboratively in virtual teams with students from the other universities (i.e., one student per university in one team). Each student team will iteratively design, develop, and evaluate a conversational agent using contemporary technology tools (e.g., Google Dialogflow, Microsoft Bot Framework, Rasa). The teams document their activities and results in a project report. The project report as well as the conversational agent prototype are the basis for the grading of the course.

The entire course is limited to 15 participants in total (5 from KIT).


  • Programming skills are beneficial

  • Experience or general interest in human-computer interaction and conversational agents

  • English communication skills

Learning Objectives

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • explain conceptual and technical foundations of conversational agents
  • perform the human-centered design approach to design, develop, and evaluate a conversational agent
  • develop conversational agents using state-of-the-art tools and frameworks
  • apply qualitative and quantitative methods to evaluate conversational agent prototype

Course Schedule

The course will kickoff with an online meeting at the end of April. Further details will be announced soon.

Course Materials

Students will be provided with all necessary materials before each session. All materials will be available in an ILIAS group.


If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Ulrich Gnewuch.


Please use the WiWi-Portal to apply for this seminar: