This study, funded by Comic Relief, aims to evaluate how young people use particular digital tools (Apps and websites) and what impact this has on their mental health – it focuses on the digital tools that have been developed as part of the Innovation Labs Initiative. The project ran from April 2014 to April 2015 and has now ended. MindTech's final report is available for download, plus there are additional blog articles to read online, an a video about the evaluation.
Final report on the Labs website:
Or download these directly from our website:
Read additional blog articles and watch a video on the Labs website:
The Innovation Labs Initiative has worked with young people, youth mental health professionals and digital agencies to prioritise seven ideas for new websites or smartphone apps that will support young people with their mental health. We will be working closely with young people in designing the different stages of the evaluation, aiming for a co-production approach which has been a key feature of the Labs initiative.
There are five stages to this project:
1. Select the digital tools to focus on for the evaluation – we have chosen to focus in depth on the tools that can be used as personal support tools by young people (some of the tools have developed into awareness raising campaigns which are outside the remit of this evaluation).
2. Desk-based research - by analysing the digital usage data, project documentation, social media representations and reviewing other similar products we will to assess the intended value of the product and the success of the development process.
3. Fieldwork with product users – by engaging young people who use the digital tools in surveys and individual interviews/video diaries we will assess how and why users value the digital products and how they impact on their wellbeing.
4. Shared learning workshop – towards the end of the study, we plan to hold a workshop with the Innovation Labs team to share our emerging findings and think about how we apply these to the further development of the digital tools.
5. Final reporting – the final stage is to bring together everything we have learnt in the earlier stages, report back to the funders / Innovation Labs and write up our findings for publication.
This project will contribute towards MindTech's work in developing new methods and approaches to evaluate and appraise digital health tools.
Contact: Lucy Simons