Accessing the Actual Use of Personal Health & Wellbeing Devices and Apps in the Wild

Adults make choices regarding the technology they use to self-manage their health and wellbeing, and these technologies are often adopted, used and abused in ways that researchers, manufacturers, and clinicians have not accounted for. This talk will give an overview of human-computer interaction qualitative research on the real world use of mobile technologies in people’s everyday lives. Accounting for individual health and wellbeing choices adults make with technology, supporting choices through end user customisation, and the emerging trend towards Do-It-Yourself open-source health and wellbeing technology will be discussed. Examples of pragmatic qualitative studies will be given from research on wearables, apps, and standalone devices used for Type 1 diabetes, hearing loss, baby monitoring, and physical fitness.

Dr Aisling O’Kane is a Senior Lecturer in Human-Computer Interaction for Health and Deputy Director of the EPSRC CDT in Digital Health and Care at the University of Bristol. As a member of the Bristol Interaction Group and the Digital Health Engineering Group, she uses a pragmatic approach to qualitative research of health, wellbeing and care technologies. Dr O’Kane is currently PI of Innovate UK Machine Learning for Diabetes, co-designing AI to support diabetes self-management and Co-I of EPSRC SPHERE Next Steps, co-designing smart home technology to support health at home.

This talk is being held as part of the Advanced Qualitative Research Methods course which is part of the Evidence-Based Health Care Programme. This is a free event and members of the public are welcome to attend.