Webinar - Exploring the Use of Proximity Sensors in Just In Time Adaptive Interventions with Eric Hekler, Aaron Coleman, and Sayali Phatak. Friday February 5th 10:00AM PST

You can view the webinar above or on our Google Plus Event page. Please feel free to ask questions prior to or during the webinar using Google’s Question and Answer feature or via Twitter using #HDEwebinar. In order to use the Question and Answer feature on Google Plus, you must be logged into a Google Plus account. To navigate to the Question and Answer feature 1) go to the webinar Google Plus event page, 2) click on the video box, 3) select the application icon (9-squar grid) in the top right corner), 4) select Q&A from the drop-down menu, 5) ask questions using the Q&A panel to the right.


Mobile technologies have the capacity to track factors that are important to health like being physically active and provide customized interventions exactly when and where it would be most beneficial for each person. While this possibility exists in theory, in practice it is very hard to know when the right time is for delivering these sorts of messages. Emerging technologies such as the smartwatch (e.g., Apple Watch) and indoor location sensors that can track where a person is inside buildings provide better opportunities to identity those exact moments when a person might both benefit from and be receptive to messages to help them achieve their personal goals. For example, a person could set up an app to keep track sitting and watching TV in his living room and then have his smartwatch vibrate and provide a motivational image at the right moment (e.g., during a commercial break/right before a new show turns on) to nudge the person to go for a walk; a behavior the person wants to do more. The purpose of this work is to examine how best to use these indoor location sensors and smartwatches to help individuals achieve their own personal health behavior change goals that explicitly balances the desire for privacy with the desire for the right help when it would be most useful.

About Eric Hekler

HecklerDr. Eric Hekler, PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion at Arizona State University and directs the  Designing Health Lab  at ASU. His research focuses on facilitating individualized and “precise” behavior change for fostering long-term health and well-being.  For example, his NSF-funded work is focused on developing mathematical models for guiding an intervention that determines an individualized “ambitious but doable” daily step goal to strive for each day. The long-term goal to develop a comprehensive intervention that provides the right type of support for physical activity only when it is needed. Dr. Hekler’s Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant is focused on developing a methodology for the more rapid collective development of technology-delivered behavior change strategies, a process he has labeled Agile Science . His Google-funded work is focused on teaching individuals fundamentals of behavior change and self-experimentation and giving them tools (e.g., home sensors and feedback) to allow them to self-experiment with behavior change techniques to optimize their health. Prior to ASU, Dr. Hekler completed his postdoctoral training at Stanford University and received his Ph.D. in Clinical Health Psychology from Rutgers University.

About Aaron Coleman

Coleman_400Aaron Coleman is an entrepreneur and software architect and is Founder & CEO at Fitabase. He began the Fitabase project after years of designing and architecting software solutions for academic research. His main focus today is bridging the gap between the exciting horizon of current mHealth tools and sensors and the needs of academic researchers.

About Sayali Phatak

Sayali_Phatak_PhotoSayali Phatak is a Doctoral Student and Research Associate at the Designing Health Lab in the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion at Arizona State University. Her work focuses on developing and testing individualized, contextually relevant and adaptive mHealth interventions, particularly targeting physical activity-related behaviors. She is also interested in applying user-centered design to make self-reporting of health-related data more engaging, valuable and less burdensome for users.