I study the scientific basis and design principles for how (sensor) technology (e.g. a smartwatch measuring physiological signals and capable of giving coaching cues) might support and change (mental) healthcare and self-management.

My research involves working out new scientific standards for validating new wearable technologies that are measuring important aspects of human physiology for use in (mental) healthcare and research. I work on innovative field studies that track people (with subjective and objective measures) with severe problems related to stress, aggression or addiction over long periods of time trying to establish possible links between bodies, thoughts, behaviour and environments. With various stakeholders (patients, caregivers, managers, designers, developers, scientists) I’m involved in co-designing ambulatory biofeedback and novel bio cueing systems for self regulation. I’m also interested how we can design technology and how we work with technology starting from core human values such as compassion (https://www.utwente.nl/en/bms/compassionatetechnology/).

For the next 5-10 years my focus will be on integrating all these themes on the topic of moving the measurement of stress from the lab to daily life in the multidisciplinary Stress-in-Action project (https://stress-in-action.nl/).

 

Functions

Expertise

  • Psychology

    • Humans
    • Communication
    • Electrodermal Activity
    • Behavior
    • Treatment
    • Research
    • Abilities
    • Mental Health

Organisations

Publications

2023
2022

Research profiles

  • Advanced Research Methods for Research Methods in Psychology, Health and Technology
  • Compassionate Technology
  • Supervision of Master theses
  • Supervision of Bachelor theses

Affiliated study programs

Courses academic year 2023/2024

Courses in the current academic year are added at the moment they are finalised in the Osiris system. Therefore it is possible that the list is not yet complete for the whole academic year.

Courses academic year 2022/2023

Below you will find the list of my current and recently finished projects.

Current projects

Designing compassionate technology with high societal readiness levels for mental healthcare

I'm project leader of this NWO funded project. It is a collaboration between 4 research groups at the University of Twente (Psychology, Health and Technology; Interaction Design; Philosophy and Human Media Interaction), Dimence and Minddistrict. n this project we will find new ways to design and develop with a value that is central to mental healthcare: Compassion. Instead of pushing new technology into healthcare, can we design technology starting from human values? Such compassionate technology should be able to deliver on the promise that technology can improve quality and access to mental healthcare.

Stress in Action

Advancing the Science of Stress by Moving the Lab to Daily Life

Stress-in-Action capitalizes on the fast advances in technology and big data analytics to move stress research from the lab to daily life. The Consortium enables synergistic collaborations to discover 1) how responses to daily-life stress arise from the temporal, dynamic interplay between context and person-specific factors, 2) how daily-life stress can be reliably measured in a specific individual in real-time, and 3) how and when potential beneficial stress-response mechanisms turn into detrimental effects on mental and cardiometabolic health. This enables the development of novel monitoring and intervention strategies to track and reduce daily-life stress and its health impact.

If we know better, do we do better: self efficacy through wearable technologies

I'm a copromotor for this project; Cooperation with Prof. Vollenbroek-Hutten (University of Twente), Dr. Tibert Verhagen (Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences) and CBRE.Elizabeth Nelson studies how information from wearable technology empowers people in maintaining healthy behavior. In addition, the effects of healthy office interventions is studied longitudinally in her doctoral research. Finally, a new embodiment scale will be developed for wearable technologies.

VRelax - Self-management of stress and sleep disturbances with virtual reality relaxation for people with mood, anxiety or psychotic disorders.

Does adding a virtual reality self-management stress-reduction tool (VRelax) to treatment as usual (TAU) reduce psychiatric symptoms, medication use, improve psychosocial functioning and reduce costs in patients with anxiety, depressive, bipolar or psychotic disorder when compared to TAU only, and what are the barriers and facilitators for implementation of VRelax in healthcare?

Finished projects

SENSE-IT: Aiming for the improvement of emotional awareness in patients with severe borderline personality disorder.

I'm a copromotor for this project; Cooperation with Prof. Bohlmeijer and Prof. Westerhof (university of Twente) and GGNet. In his doctoral research Youri Derks focuses on the question how wearablebiosensor technology and mobile coaching can improve psychotherapeutic clinical treatment of mental health patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD).

Real-time tele-monitoring of physiological processes and self-reported craving to reduce relapse rates in alcohol addiction.

I'm a copromotor for this project; Cooperation with Prof. Schraagen, Prof Vollenbroek-Hutten, Dr. Pieterse, Dr. Postel (University of Twente) and Dr. De Haan (Tactus addiction care).In her Doctoral Research Hendrika van Lier examines the experience and physiology of people receiving treatment for alcohol addiction. In addition, she tests the validity of the wearable bio-sensors she uses, and provides a comprehensive literature review on viable theoretical frameworks with essential parameters for real-time and real world alcohol craving research.

Biofeedback for aggression regulation problems in the forensic ambulatory care

I'm a copromotor for this project; Cooperation with Prof. Popma (VUmc, De Bascule), Arkin and the Ministery of Security and Justice. The question whether real-time biofeedback can be a relevant support factor in aggression regulation treatments for adolescents and young adults is the main topic of the doctoral research of Annemieke ter Harmsel. In a Randomised Controlled Trial she will examine both Treatment as Usual (TAU) as well as TAU with real time biofeedback added to answer the question whether biofeedback can be seen as a relevant adjuvans.

Address

University of Twente

Cubicus (building no. 41), room B123
De Zul 10
7522 NJ Enschede
Netherlands

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