[2019.02] How might we provide mental health support for international…

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Name Murilo Henneman… Date19-01-08 15:51 Hit360 Comment0


With the current increase of interest in mental health conditions, such as depression, anxiety, and stress, there has been investments and researches around the globe. However, there is very little focus towards a minority of international students and even less work on the design field for them. This thesis aims to provide mental health support solutions with the students on the role of decision-makers and put the designer on the role of facilitator at the South Korean university environment. Thus, we were able to provide empowerment to users with the user-centered design methodologies and design thinking. Combining these methods with a design sprint to further tailor down and bring meaningful solutions we were able to discover guidelines towards designing for international students mental health based on the following needs: trust, staff limitations, information, awareness, and perception. Based on our empirical studies we were able to conduct a design sprint with six students from UNIST and found out that the solutions provided by them mostly fall into four different categories: social fabric, advising and supporting, information and guidance with digital solutions, and improvement of wellbeing or quality of life. With the aim to tackle those needs we decided to continue the research with a temporary solution based on a chatbot. On this digital application, users would be able to do screenings and check on their mental health status and, provided with their scores, be able to see other students result in the form of an average score and their own progress on that screening score, creating a reliable resource for future encounters with health care professionals. In the end, we are able to provide a different point of view on a rising field of interest for technology and data use with guidelines that can help design and how we believe tackling them can be done with a digital solution.

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