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Cope was created in ten weeks from research, ideation, and evaluative user testing with the mentorship of Professor Sung Park at SCAD.

Unaddressed trauma symptoms often develop into unregulated triggers and chronic mental health problems, creating the need for a safe space for initiating self-awareness.

Cope is an AI application that uses a wearable device (Copilot) to document and analyze triggers to suggest coping actions suited to individuals who are impacted by traumatic events.


Vision Video


My Role


Research Lead - Cherie Chung

Project Lead - Laura Ford

Visual Design Lead - Juliana Sampaio

Product Design Lead - Charlie Bowles

Interaction Design Lead - Tucker Hemphill

Generative research

Interview & user testing facilitating

Data synthesizing & analysis

Wireframing & prototyping

Personas & user journey maps

Content strategy

Indigo Awards:

Digital Tools and Utilities - Gold

Mobile App - Gold

Innovative Use of Mobile Technology - Silver

UX, Interface & Navigation - Silver

Interactive Design - Silver

Mobile Interaction & Experience - Silver


70% of US adults have experienced trauma, that is about 223.4 million people. Constant trauma exposure and PTSD, continual sensory memory, causes traumatic memory distortion where people remember experiencing more trauma than they actually did, influencing their long term memory.


“No one can prevent the pain and suffering tied to the human experience, it is inescapable. We will all experience losses of immense proportions.

What we can prevent, however, is suffering on top of pain.

PRIMARY RESEARCH - 102 survey responses

Question: How many people do you know who have been impacted with a mental illness (eg: PTSD, anxiety, depression) from a traumatic experience?



stated that they knew someone around them who are currently impacted by a mental illness.

Question: Have you experienced a traumatic event? 



stated that they experienced a traumatic event.

With these quantitative data, we realised that trauma was more common than the general public thought, and PTSD was not something that only military veterans experienced. Events like losing a loved one, being in a car accident to even an intense break-up had as much impact on the individual as more rare events like being a part of the war.


From this point on, we defined Trauma as the following:

Trauma is used to describe distressing event(s) that may have long lasting, harmful effect on a person's physical and emotional health and well-being.

We invited users with who were willing to share their experience with trauma to an interview to find out in-depth about their journey to getting support and any difficulties along their journey to mental wellness. As this was a difficult topic to talk about, we had a hard time recruiting participants. To gain more insights, we sent out a qualitative survey to participants who were more comfortable being interviewed without direct contact.

Through our interviews and survey responses, we realised that...

1. The support system around people affects the way they approach coping with trauma.

2. Response to triggers affects a person’s physical health as well as their social, academic, and professional life in the long run.

3. Coping methods vary and are very specific to each individual.


Each data point gathered in the research phase was written onto a yellow sticky note, and placed randomly onto a wall to remove bias when finding trends. These yellow sticky  notes were gathered into different groups based on affinity of the data points.

Through affinity mapping, we consolidated 531 yellow stickies to 22 pink stickies. These 22 pink stickies are our key insights that formed 7 How Might We statements used for ideation. 

Going forward from research to ideation, we focused on these 9 How Might We statements, that represented opportunity areas for us to explore.



We also realised that there were also different user groups, we broadly characterised them using the willingness to ask for help after experiencing a traumatic event. We also noted the large trends in difficulties that users face while asking for help.

To narrow down our scope, we decided to focus on the users willing to ask for help (highlighted in blue).

Using the user groups discovered in the research phase, we created 4 personas that the concept would serve.

Sasha is our primary user, a independent individual impacted by a traumatic event. She would like seek help but face time constraints because of her job.

For more details on personas, please refer to the process book.


We had to consider:

              How does the product and application make the user feel?

              How can we customise this experience to the user?


              Are/ How much are people willing to pay for the physical product?

We needed a solution that could help self-helpers cope with trauma in their day-to-day schedules. How can we ensure trust and encourage initiative action with the user?


How might we provide a safe environment for self-motivators and encourage self-awareness, initiative action in trauma recovery while reducing the negative effects of trauma symptoms in everyday life?

Cope is an AI application that uses a wearable device (Copilot) to help track and identify when, where, and why triggers induced by trauma occur, and will suggest actions and coping methods based on the trigger activity in the paired application.


Having decided on the concept, we created paper prototypes and user tested in the early stages to test the concept and usability.


I was heavily involved in the preliminary prototyping, having used online resources on current techniques used to help trauma-impacted individuals and looked at competitors like PTSD coach that are in the market right now. We decided on using a visually unique UI that had more organic curves to positively stimulate our users in their process of self-recovery.

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We had the opportunity to run our concept and paper prototypes by a interaction designer at Google and Product Designer at Arcadia Earth, and they helped us narrow down our scope and design direction with their expertise working with different users. The unique curved UI elements were well received.


The biggest concern was : Feature Bloat. How can we ensure that we are only putting what was needed into Cope?

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A/B testing of UI Visual Display:

Users preferred the circular nature of the home menu

Users voiced the need to prompt them to remember events that had happened in a relaxed manner, after experimenting with different approaches, users felt that location and date would be a non-triggering prompt.

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Users voiced the need to prompt them to remember events that had happened in a relaxed manner, after experimenting with different approaches, users felt that location and date would be a non-triggering prompt.

Some changes to the prototype for the preliminary user testing:

We also user tested our physical product, Copilot, for the process please find it in the process book.



Especially because we were tackling a topic that may make users uncomfortable while user testing, we focused a lot of the interaction on how we can make users comfortable and aid the users in the process of self-help after experiencing trauma.

With the feedback, we altered our interface to minimize confusion and optimize comfort, this heavily influenced content strategy, information architecture and the minimal visual elements and colours used in the final prototype.

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After mid-fidelity prototypes, we created and tested our interfaces again with Figma.

High-Fi User Testing and Expert Reviews were done with UX Design alumni to gather interaction and visual design advice. With these expert review insights, we were able to increase usability and think more holistically about our designs.

After several iterations with the help of user testing insights, we finalized our interfaces.


We also created a magazine for the final concept of Cope.

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For more details and information, please refer to the process book.

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