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Media researchers captured Heidelberg


Group from the Institute for Media Research in front of the TeaP venue

From March 21st to 23rd the 58th Conference of Experimental Psychologists (TeaP) took place in the marvelous city of Heidelberg. A group of media researchers from CrossWorlds and the affiliated Chair of E-Learning and New Media participated as well and presented their work during the conference.

Right at the first day, Maria Wirzberger gave a talk on modeling load-inducing factors in instructional design within her organized symposium on enhancing experimental research with the cognitive architecture ACT-R, in which she had invited speakers from Heidelberg and Berlin as well. On the second day, within a session on multimedia learning Steve Nebel talked about the jigsaw principle in educational videogames, Sascha Schneider presented his research on politeness in multimedia instructions as facilitator of learning and motivation and Maik Beege introduced his work on the effect of addressing in multimedia learning. Furthermore, master’s degree student Laura Winkler together with her supervisor Kevin Koban presented her bachelor’s thesis on attractiveness priming in one of the exceptionally well-attended poster sessions. During the third day, Alexander Skulmowski gave his talk regarding impacts of physical demands on cognitive resource allocation in a session related to the field of embodiment.

We had a great time in Heidelberg with a lot of exciting talks and discussions! Moreover, we could enjoy vibrant conversations with our fellows from various locations and research areas and thereby enhance our professional networks.


Promoting young talents

Vergabe der Deutschlandstipendien, TU Berlin, 04.02.2016, Ruta

Maria Wirzberger and her scholar Katja Dittrich ©TU Berlin/Jacek Ruta

On the occasion of the Germany scholarship celebration 2015/2016 at the TU Berlin, CrossWorlds researcher Maria Wirzberger, formerly scholar and now sponsor within the scholarship program, got together with her current scholar Katja Dittrich and handed over the scholarship certificate. Being a graduate of the Human Factors master’s degree course, Maria Wirzberger dedicated her scholarship to a student enrolled in this course of studies.

The Germany scholarship program is intended to promote highly talented and socially involved students by monetary and career-related support. It receives funding in equal parts from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as well as private sponsors (companies, foundations or private individuals).


Vincent Küszter successfully defended his PhD on multi-user VR


Our dear Crossworlds colleague and friend Vincent Küszter successfully defended his PhD thesis today. Vincent’s work is titled “Enwicklung eines mehrbenutzerfähigen projektionsbasierten VR-Systems und Untersuchung ausgewählter Aspekte der Nutzerinteraktion” (Development of a projection-based multi-user VR system and evaluation of specific aspects of user interaction).

His talk was attended very well and the organizers soon ran out of chairs. Dr. Küszter will continue his work on the prototype platform as associate member of Crossworlds. His new platform is used for further projects and psychological studies by members of the second group of graduates and also as a research tool in master’s courses of the Master of Science program “media psychology and instructional psychology”. His dissertation will be available as monograph, soon.

Congratulations from the whole Crossworlds team, Vincent!


Slides from Johannes Breuer’s talk

Last week Dr. Johannes Breuer visited CrossWorlds and gave an inspiring talk on Mobile Learning opportunities. He also discussed first results from a current project, where Dr. Breuer and his team develop a quiz-game application for the University of Cologne. This app is designed to help students prepare for exams and uses gamification techniques from popular apps like Quizkampen (“QuizDuell” in German).

We had a great time with Dr. Breuer and hope he enjoyed his stay in Chemnitz. Besides social activities in small groups, the workshop after the talk offered yet another chance to discuss research.

You can download the slides from Dr. Breuers talk here (PDF, 1,5 Mbyte).


Thank you for sketching with us, Sheelagh Carpendale!

Prof. Carpendale's workshop

Prof. Carpendale’s workshop

At the beginning of last week, Prof. Sheelagh Carpendale visited our group for two exciting and productive days. We enjoyed one of her famous “Sketching Visualizations” sessions, where even colleagues from Dresden joined, and intensive discussions about ongoing and future research projects of both sides, also stimulated by her talk about “Interacting Information through Visualization”. Fortunately, there was even time to visit the Christmas Market and chat through the evening with a warm drink.


Invited talk by Johannes Breuer on December 10th

We are happy to annouce that Dr. Johannes Breuer will be visiting Chemnitz this week. Dr. Breuer will be giving a talk in our series on “Interdisciplinary Research on Social Technologies” titled “Can smartphones make people smarter? Challenges and opportunities for the design and use of mobile educational games” on December 10th, 9.00-11.00 am in Room 2/N013 (Neues Hörsaalgebäude).

Dr. Breuer will discuss the potential of mobile games for learning in secondary and higher education, based on experiences and first results from a recently started project on the development and use of a mobile quiz game for higher education.

CrossWorlds invites all interested students and university staff to attend the talk. Please spread the word!

You can read the abstract of the talk and a short bio of Dr. Breuer after the jump.

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CrossWorlds retreat at IBS Laubusch

CW Laubusch

CrossWorlds team at IBS Laubusch

To consolidate their dissertation topics and further develop existing cooperation ideas, members of the current group of CrossWorlds researchers and their supervisors met in conclave at the IBS (international centre of computer science and encounters) in Lauta-Laubusch from November 9th to 10th. Topics and ideas were first discussed vividly in plenum, and afterwards refined in interdisciplinary study groups. Prospective cooperation projects deal for instance with joint educational and linguistic multi-user settings at shared haptic devices, moral dilemmas in virtual reality or novel applications of facial recognition parameters. Altogether, we spent two busy days filled with intense conversations and focussed work that really brought forward our ideas!


Invited talk by Sheelagh Carpendale on December 1st

Sheelagh Carpendale

CrossWorlds is honored to announce the visit of Prof. Dr. Sheelagh Carpendale, professor at the University of Calgary in Canada. She will be in Chemnitz from November 30th till December 1st and introduce us to her research “Interacting Information through Visualization” at December 1st, 11.00 a.m. – 1.00 p.m. in the N113 (Neues Hösrsaalgebäude on the Reichenhainer Straße). There she will share her expertise in the areas of Information Visualization and Interaction Design with us.

CrossWorlds invites all interested students and university staff to attend the talk.

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Aaron Marcus visited CrossWolds and gave a very inspiring talk

On October 12th, Mr. Aaron Marcus visited CrossWorlds and gave a talk on “Mobile Persuasion Design”. He presented his perspective and experience on the theories and practice of User Centered Design, Experience Design, the Science of Persuasion, and the merging of these developments in current and future applications for phones, tablets and wearables. Thereby, he gave insight in some of the work he performed during his long and successful career: Mr. Marcus is President of Aaron Marcus and Associates, Inc. (AM+A), in Berkeley, California, and an internationally known expert in Mobile User-Experience Design, Mobile Persuasion Design, Information Design, Visualization and Cross-Cultural Design. In a subsequent workshop, we presented our own projects to Mr. Marcus and got some very valuable feedback.


Thank you for visiting Chemnitz, Verena Nitsch!

As already announced, within the last two days Jun.-Prof. Dr. Verena Nitsch, Assistant professor of Cognitive Ergonomics at the Universität der Bundeswehr München, visited CrossWorlds. We really enjoyed a workshop filled with enlightening discussions on our respective fields of research, and spent a nice evening in one of the most sophisticated restaurants in Chemnitz. To our great pleasure, yesterday’s talk was attended by a considerable amount of students and colleagues from various disciplines and departments. It provided fascinating insights in the role of multimodality in human-machine interaction, and taught us that even robots can express a sense of humour! Thank you Verena Nitsch for two great days, and we hope you enjoyed your stay with us as well!