Julie Kientz studying healthy sleep behaviors with NSF and NIH award

Friday, September 20, 2013

Human Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) Professor Julie KientzHuman Centered Design & Engineering (HCDE) Professor Julie Kientz is the Principal Investigator (PI) for a National Science Foundation (NSF) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) Award for the project, "Supporting Healthy Sleep Behaviors through Ubiquitous Computing." Co-PIs for the award are Computer Science & Engineering (CSE) Professor James Fogarty, Neurology Professor Nathaniel Watson, and School of Nursing Professor Carol Landis.

Sleep is critical to good health, along with diet and exercise, but it has been relatively under-studied in comparison. The right amount of quality sleep can improve both physical and mental health and is associated with a lower risk of serious diseases like heart disease, diabetes, depression, and obesity. However, sleep disorders are often undiagnosed, and many people are unaware of how their activities or environments affect sleep.

In their three-year project, Kientz and her co-PIs plan to combine their expertise in human centered design, computer science, sleep medicine, and nursing in order to design, develop, and evaluate novel ubiquitous computing approaches to supporting good sleep health and behaviors. They will do this by sensing and predicting sleep duration and time; identifying the behavioral and environmental factors that can disrupt sleep; and helping users understand the impact sleep has on their lives. For more information, please go to the NSF website.