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Professional Portfolio

Sleep Cycles for Kids with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis

Sleep Cycles for Kids with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis

This was my capstone project for my Master of Science in Human Centered Design and Engineering from the University of Washington. Our goal was to build an app to help kids age 8–12 with Juvenile Idiosyncratic Arthritis track and better understand their sleep patterns.

Families of children with Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis (JIA) often suffer from sleep deficiency (inadequate amount of sleep or poor quality). This deficiency can exacerbate their arthritis. A first step in solving this issue is tracking and communicating sleep patterns with their parents and healthcare provider.

However, families do not have an effective method to keep track of how they are sleeping. By monitoring these data points we hope to empower children, their families, and their healthcare providers to self-manage their sleep and JIA-related symptoms.


We explored this question through user research, prototyping, and design thinking.

Timeline from November to March 2016 showing iterative cycles during the prototyping and usability testing in January and February

We began with user and market research to better understand the current market opportunities that reflect the needs of families with JIA. From there, we created and tested a low fidelity prototype with users. We analyzed those results and implemented them into a high fidelity prototype which we tested on our users to confirm our design decisions. Finally, we delivered a video preview of the app, a high fidelity prototype, and design specifications outlining the design decisions made to our sponsors. These sponsors are actively working with an engineering team to build an intervention to help families with JIA and our work here will help inform that intervention.

My Role

As the project manager, I was the main point of contact for the client. I additionally created the timeline and regularly reminded the client and the team about upcoming deadlines and what everyone’s next actions were. I also made sure our files were well organized and that we had a clearly documented set of deliverables for the client.

As the technical writer, I was in large part in charge of the creation and editing of documents: the milestones, and content for the process book and poster. For the visual design of the process book and poster we had an artist on our team, who did a great job illustrating those as well as the final version of the app.

As the user researcher, I wrote the usability test scripts and did the moderating for all but a couple of the usability tests we conducted. Additionally, I coordinate and scheduled testers, and was in charge of capturing the sessions with video cameras and audio recorders (as backups).

I also recorded the screen casts and voiceover for the video, though our prototyper did the final work to clip the final video together.