UCLIC Students at CHI Student Design Competition

Two student teams in our HCI-E MSc Program have been selected to participate in the final stage of the ACM CHI Student Design Competition. They were amongst the only 12 teams (out of 62, 19% acceptance rate) that were invited to present their design projects at the prestigious international conference in the field of Human-Computer Interaction in San Jose. At the conference a jury of academics and industrial praticioners will select the final winners of the competition. The groups developed their projects as part of the course work for the re-structured Design Practice module. This module connects research and teaching through a novel structure of working on applied HCI projects throughout the module. Furthermore, each student group is mentored by a UCLIC researcher guiding their design and research process, with the result of a close link between research and teaching activities in HCI.

We would like to thank the UCL Department of Computer Science, the Division of Psychology and Language Sciences, and the UCL Interaction Centre for their generous financial support that allows the student team members to travel to the conference in San Jose in May 2016.

Team 1: AwareMe: Addressing Fear of Public Speaking through Awareness

Mark Bubel, Ruiwen Jiang, Christine Lee, Wen Shi, Audrey Tse

Fear of public speaking is an anxiety that most people encounter at some point in their lives. Some people with extreme fear of public speaking will avoid it at all costs, even if it means their personal, professional, and social growth may be hindered. AwareMe incorporates aspects of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) and good public speaking practices to make an empowering assistive technology for people who suffer from different levels of public speaking anxiety. AwareMe is a device that provides feedback on voice pitch, filler words, and words per minute during presentation practice. It has a detachable wristband, worn during presentations, that provides visual and haptic feedback. Our approach differs from existing solutions because it focuses on bringing the users' attention to how their anxiety influences their speech patterns; this awareness helps them to directly improve their public speaking skills.


Team 2: CarryLine: A Tool for Management and Rehabilitation of Post-Natal Chronic Back Pain

Danilo Di Cuia, Jelizaveta Janovica, Zuzanna Lechelt, Sheng Li, Harpreet Purewal

Thus far, very little research has specifically addressed the potential of technologies for post-natal chronic back pain. This is a prevalent condition in women which re- sponds to rehabilitation and management patterns dis- tinct from those used for other forms of chronic back pain and must also take into account the unique life- style factors of motherhood. Here, we present Carry- Line, a smart baby carrier connected to a digital frame, which encourages physiotherapist-recommended activi- ty for rehabilitation of post-natal chronic back pain in an innovative and engaging way.