Digital tracking looks to mental health with prototype app

Posted on September 22, 2014

The app, a work in progress, is being called The StudentLife app and it tracks mental health status by means of smartphone sensors.

For the first test-run, a test group of 48 Dartmouth students downloaded an Android prototype of the app that monitored readings from their smartphones’ sensors (such as accelerometer, microphone, light sensor and GPS) for 10 weeks. Using their academic performance as a baseline, the readings were used to interpret students’ mental health based on factors such as stress, time spent socializing and physical activity levels.

Data from the sensors was assessed using algorithms and the app was able to measure a considerable number of behaviors automatically without input from the students including conversations in number and duration, sleep duration, walking, sitting, running, standing and the location of students on campus, discerning automatically between the gym, the cafeteria, parties and class. The app could also detect information about eating habits and how good the user was feeling about him or herself, among other factors, with no conscious input from the students.

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Source material from Free Malaysia

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