Neurological SEL Screener

SILAS-D can measure subtle physiological aspects of learning, hidden in the variability of biorhythmic activities registered from the person’s nervous system’s states. These emerge from micro-fluctuations of naturalistic behaviors and are reflected in the eyes, face, and voice, all in response to sensory stimuli guiding the perception-actions loops. From spontaneous, exploratory to intended, goal-directed acts, SILAS-D can track the evolution of physiological sensory-motor statistical learning. We can directly measure these forms of learning, adaptation, transfer, and generalization across different environments and connect them to academic performance rubrics in the domain of Social Emotional Learning.
In a naturalistic, gamified setting, three dimensional eye gaze will help us capture the patterns of motions during attentional periods vs. those during periods of inattentive random search. We will be able to understand individual learning preferences, to better instruct children in academic settings.
Facial Micro Expressions
Using new algorithms, we will characterize universal action units as children of school age project different emotions. Then, we will be able to automatically detect emotional states during naturalistic games that engage the children in fun social exchange as they transition through different learning states.
Facial micro-expressions sonified and cross-correlated with voice’s micro-motions give us a far richer picture of the child’s emotions than either one of these alone. This highly scalable information will sample broadly across different cultures and languages to showcase different ranges of voice in human neurodevelopment.

SILAS/Rutgers University Partnership

In partnership with Professor Torres- SMIL (Sensory Motor Integration Lab) at Rutgers University, SILAS has built a platform for data collection and analysis approved by the Rutgers Institutional Review Board (IRB), to significantly expand our knowledge about social emotions in children of school age. We aim at better understanding children’s emotions by letting them teach us how they project their own feelings and how they interpret the feelings of others in a social group.
Below are three physiological areas that our SILAS-D app will be able to assess as well as what our beta app currently looks like today. Although we use a video camera we do not actually take videos of students. We plot 67 points on a face and then use those points to automatically detect emotions that are present or absent.
Attentional Window
At sub second time scales, through the eyes' motion patterns, the patterns of head orientation and facial micro-expressions, we will be able to differentiate states of mental focus from states of mental wondering. They will discern moments of curios exploration and moments of self-guided targeted learning, revealing each child's preferences along with the class's predispositions throughout the daily learning progression.
Emotional Regulation
Sampling broadly across ages and developmental stages, we will learn from de-identified digital points on a facial grid, how children project their emotions along a broad range of distributions. Across different cultures, ethnic groups and socio-economic sectors, we will learn how perceive emotions and use them to self-regulate and to regulate others in a social scene. We will reveal universal features of early human development that all children of a given school age share, along with features specific to each developmental stage. In a highly diversified society today, bringing awareness about these features will help all children develop better social and emotional skills when interacting with children of other ages and cultural backgrounds.
Instruction Readiness
Not all children are ready at once to learn targeted content. Some children take longer to explore independently and curiously wonder on their own, before discovering what they need to do. Others prefer to follow instructions and be guided by precise goals from the get-go. By learning the child's preferences, and the class level of instruction readiness, teachers can be more effective delivering content and children can be more eager to receive new material. SILAS-D automates the process of dynamically discovering the child's learning preferences at any given time and in so doing stimulates the child's creative thinking.

What Does It All Mean?

It means that as a teacher in K-12, you will be able to see beyond the limits of your naked eyes, using commercially available technology to fill in the gap of conscious knowledge. The SILAS-D app will be a brief, scalable and objective SEL screening tool aiding the teacher and the student.

The app will offer a non-invasive way to collect de-identified, digital physiological data (the building blocks of Social Emotion) to show us for the first time what to expect on the timely progression of developmental-learning milestones. Through commercially available and truly inclusive means like phones, chrome books and tablets, a video camera and microphone will inform us of learning preferences, attentional and emotional windows, so the child is ready to explore, receive instructions and remain curious to learn.

We are in the process of gathering the data and connecting the research to practice. Contact us below if you would like to get involved!

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