Safe Ears Results

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What if mobile technology could encourage a sunscreen habit? Safe Ears uses text messaging to facilitate healthy behavior change by applying the principles of the Fogg Behavior Model.

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Safe Ears Results

  1. 1. Safe Ears: What if mobile tech could encourage a sunscreen habit? Andrew Hershberger Stanford University http://habits.stanford.edu
  2. 2. Safe Ears <ul><li>Simple: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Carry a bottle of sunscreen in your bag. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Receive a text message every morning at 11 AM. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Immediately apply some sunscreen to your ears. </li></ul></ul>Andrew Hershberger Stanford University
  3. 3. Safe Ears <ul><li>Simple: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Carry a bottle of sunscreen in your bag. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Receive a text message every morning at 11 AM. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Immediately apply some sunscreen to your ears. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Possible: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Five volunteers participated in a ten-day trial of Safe Ears. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Each participant used sunscreen more often during the trial than before the trial started. </li></ul></ul>Green: Applied sunscreen to ears Red: Did not apply sunscreen Andrew Hershberger Stanford University
  4. 4. Safe Ears <ul><li>Simple: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Carry a bottle of sunscreen in your bag. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Receive a text message every morning at 11 AM. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Immediately apply some sunscreen to your ears. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Possible: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Five volunteers participated in a ten-day trial of Safe Ears. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Each participant used sunscreen more often during the trial than before the trial started. </li></ul></ul>Why did it work? Andrew Hershberger Stanford University
  5. 5. The Theory <ul><li>According to the Fogg Behavior Model people must: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>be sufficiently motivated , </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>have adequate ability , and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>receive a trigger </li></ul></ul><ul><li>for a behavior to occur. </li></ul>Source: BJ Fogg, Ph.D. For more info visit http://behaviormodel.org Andrew Hershberger Stanford University
  6. 6. The Application Andrew Hershberger Stanford University Trigger Ability Motivation <ul><ul><li>The text message served as the trigger: an instruction that now is the time to apply sunscreen. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The trigger was well-timed: just before eating lunch outside in the sun and while the participants had access to sunscreen. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Each volunteer was offered a new bottle of sunscreen to carry in their bag. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Having sunscreen at hand when the text was received made it easy to perform the behavior – an increase in ability. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Applying sunscreen only to the ears made the action fast to perform – a second increase in ability. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Graduate students who eat lunch outdoors at an on-campus café were invited to volunteer because they sat in the sun at lunch, giving them reason to need sunscreen. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Potential participants were not pressured to participate, increasing the chances that they were already highly motivated to apply sunscreen – in four out of five cases, they were. </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. What about habits? Green: Applied sunscreen to ears Red: Did not apply sunscreen Participants 1, 2, and 4 said they want to make sunscreen a habit. With the help of Safe Ears, participants 2 and 4 made incredible progress, moving from 0 to 3.5 and from 1 to 6.3 applications per week! The Fogg Behavior Grid argues that one step on the way to a long-term habit is just performing the behavior the first time. Another step is performing the behavior regularly for a finite length of time. This means that participants 2 and 4 have moved at least one step closer to forming a habit. See http://behaviorgrid.org for more info. Andrew Hershberger Stanford University
  8. 8. Wrapping Up <ul><ul><li>Certain habits can be tough to start. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Safe Ears demonstrates that by applying the principles of the Fogg Behavior Model, mobile technologies (in this case texting) can be used to make habit formation easier. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>For more information about habits, please visit us at http://habits.stanford.edu </li></ul></ul>Andrew Hershberger Stanford University

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