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Moodpath is one of those products that will make the world a better place for many people. I was responsible for the UX and UI and loved every minute of it.

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Depression is one of the most common disorders worldwide, yet not enough people are talking about it. Finding treatment is not as easy as it should be and if you’re lucky enough to get an appointment with a therapist, chances are good that you had to wait for it for several months.

The current situation is not acceptable so every attempt to make it better is important. Moodpath is not just an attempt, but a product that’s already out there helping people. Moodpath answers one simple question that is not easy to answer: “Am I depressed?”

We tried to make the app look like something you would actually want to use, something that’s fun but still serious enough to make clear that this is an actual tool that takes your (potential) mental health problem seriously.

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A simple question (Am I depressed?) is unfortunately not always answered with a simple solution. That’s why there are several important steps between the user asking the question and downloading the app and Moodpath being able to answer it. Beginning with the onboarding.

As we’re dealing with people who are looking for help, we really don’t want to lose anyone at this stage. It’s not about “conversion” but about “how many people can we help live a better life”. Our solution is an onboarding that talks to the user.

By asking questions, we get to know the user well enough for the algorithm to be able to use the data for an satisfying result but not so well as to lose the anonymity that’s crucial for a product that handles the privat data of potential patients.

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Questions are a big part of Moodpath. The result is based on nine questions the user anwers every day. Three times a day a notification tells the user that new questions are available. The last question just asks how the user's current mood is. The questions before that are a bit more specific and ask about different aspects of everyday life.

The card-based interface allows to quickly answer by choosing “yes” or “no”. If “yes” you get to define how much the current topic impacts you. Our solution was to develop an interface that doesn’t take up a lot of time to get done with. As we’re notifying the user three times a day it’s important to make the interaction as fast as possible to not waste time. Wasting someone's time just results in people not using the app anymore.

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The “moodpath” itself tells you about your current progress. We wanted the user to be able to see what they already achieved and what’s still in front of them. It was especially necessary to provide an achievable goal that is always in sight. Something to work towards. The result of every finished day is a summary of all the questions you answered that day, visualised by an emoticon that aggregates every “How do you feel?” answer into one.

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For people that don’t just want to use Moodpath three times a day and be done with it, we added a “Knowledge” tab that allows users to read about depression, mental health and many other topics that are relevant to their own situation. Not everything is available right from the start. The more questions you answer the more knowledge will be made available. This gives the user a reason to check back in and to not forget about their goal: To answer three questions a day to find out if they’re suffering from depression.

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After 14 days of answering questions, the user gets informed about the result being ready. The result contains an easy to understand statement if the user seems to suffer from depression or not. If yes, Moodpath offers several steps the user could take from this point on. One of them is to recommend a list of therapists and support via hotline.

You can find Moodpath at moodpath.de and on the App Store.

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