AudioCAT - Maritime competence assessment via voice-controlled computer dialogue systems

Navigation with AudioCAT
© Fraunhofer IDMT/Daniel Schmidt
Navigation with AudioCAT

Ship crews are recruited from many different countries, which results in multinational teams. These teams have to navigate ships safely and efficiently. Mistakes in navigating the ship can cause immense costs. Therefore, the complex socio-technical environment on board places high demands on the crew. The shipping companies carefully screen their candidates to turn culturally diverse individuals into a well-functioning team. Interactive computer systems can support the process of testing professional qualifications and soft skills.  

Objectives and procedure

The AudioCAT system to be developed in the project is intended to put the prospective ship's personnel in the situation of driving a ship and test their abilities under realistic conditions. The system will provide practical tasks (e.g. navigation) via a screen while at the same time conducting a spontaneous and authentic conversation with the test taker. Nautical knowledge and soft skills are evaluated in the background. The research focus of the project is also on the automatic recognition of non-native English utterances, on intelligent and authentic computer dialogues and on algorithms for evaluating nautical competencies and soft skills such as resilience under stress.

Innovations and perspectives

The introduction of a computer dialogue system and automated competence testing enables an objective and efficient evaluation of technical and soft skills under realistic conditions and provides a completely new type of competence testing.  

The project AudioCAT is funded by the German ministry of education and research (BMBF).

Speech Recognition for Products and Processes

The speech recognition technology of the Fraunhofer IDMT in Oldenburg functions robustly - with and without an internet connection.