University of Salford award winning innovation assisting travel to school

By Oct.09, 2015

lightboxThe smartphone app, developed by academics at the University of Salford and Lancaster University helps families make journeys to school more convenient. The app ‘goWSB’ was developed by psychologist Dr Sarah Norgate (University of Salford) and computer scientist Professor Nigel Davies (Lancaster University) to encourage families and school communities to use walking buses.

goWSB (walking school bus) is part of the Sixth Sense Transport project which investigated how travel decisions could be enhanced using social networking principles and smartphone technology to create ‘visibility’ of transport options in time and space

Traditional WSBs involve children walking together to school as a group supervised by a coordinator. goWSB enables families to remotely monitor the progress of a WSB through a mobile application that provides real-time visualisation of a WSB’s current location, predicted arrival times at pick-up points & security controls that empower parents to better coordinate a families morning routine.

The research behind the goWSB app involved three years of computer science research into how to provide generalizable support for mobile applications based on the prediction of future events, supported by research studies in psychology to deliver a ‘proof of concept’ for goWSB. Using the goWSB app, parents and children track the WSB as it departs from its starting point and travels along designated stops until it reaches the school. In this way, while the WSB is being tracked, families can access real-time estimates of the WSB arrival time at their chosen stop and parents get reassurance of when the WSB arrives at the school.

What are the benefits of goWSB?

  • Reduce child transport costs.
  • Increase your children’s exposure to physical activity and improve wellbeing.
  • Gain greater flexibility in your morning routine, freeing up time to perform other activities
  • Real-time visualisation of your children’s whereabouts taking part in a WSB & offers peace-of-mind that they have arrived safely.
  • Encourage your children to be more proactive in coordinating their travel to school.
  • Engage in environmentally sustainable approaches to child transportation.

For further information, please visit: http://www.gowsb.com/


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