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Raytheon Technologies to improve global student learning

  • Raytheon BBN’s Cyrus software selected by Pratham USA for large-scale educational deployment

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., 22nd March. Raytheon BBN’s Cyrus speech recognition software was selected by Pratham USA, an organization dedicated to improving the quality of education, for integration into Pratham’s Oral Reading Fluency tool.

Cyrus is a real-time speech processing and command extractor for human-machine interfaces. Once integrated into the ORF tool, it will automatically evaluate a child’s reading level in multiple languages, identifying children who may need assistance with reading and comprehension so that additional resources may be provided to support them. Using Cyrus, the ORF tool will also help flag children with dysfluency in speech such as stammering or stuttering.

“When integrated with Cyrus, the ORF tool will be able to reach communities in developing countries that lack internet connectivity and will be easily adaptable, allowing educational institutions and their partners to scale worldwide,” said Stavros Tsakalidis, Raytheon BBN lead scientist.Cyrus enables data entry, completely on-device, meaning the data is never sent to third parties and most importantly, does not require a network connection. Users may further define ‘grammars’ that specify the allowable voice inputs or phraseology recognized by the system.”

Pratham will deploy the tool across its locations in India, potentially reaching more than 4.5 million learners. The enhanced ORF tool has the potential to assess and improve the reading levels of children in low-income communities across India, where the technological divide is high and the teacher-pupil ratio is low. It will also be contextualized for multiple countries and shared through Pratham’s global network of partner organizations and beyond, to include locations in Africa, South Asia and Latin-America.

Cyrus’ wide and diverse range of deployments showcases its advanced features, flexible customization and installation. These deployments cover applications that include:

  • Training and simulation (Air Traffic Control).
  • Command and control (autonomous systems, avionics, and the Air Force’s Advanced Battle Management System).
  • Dispatch and direction.
  • Air Traffic Management.
  • Natural Language Interface of the next-generation NASA spacesuit.

Work on Raytheon BBN’s Cyrus software was conducted in Cambridge, Mass.

Raytheon BBN is a subsidiary of Raytheon Intelligence & Space, a business of Raytheon Technologies.


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