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“Behind the Scenes of Struggling Teens”

An App Prototype
By Angelina and Leah
High School Students from Thomas A. Edison Career & Technical High School
Screenshot 67

About this Project:

Our project Behind the Scenes of Struggling Teens is a wireframe for a social platform app that would allow teenagers struggling with mental illness to journal about their feelings & experiences & share it with an online community of other teens like them. This project addresses the need for more awareness in the world about the prevalence of mental illness among teens & the need for teens to have a safe outlet to talk about what they are going through. If we were able to build it, in its final design users would have their account page be formatted in the style of a diary, with posts in the style of a diary entry.

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Screenshot 66

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Community Feedback:

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Fun
🚀 
Innovative
🌎 
Helpful
🌈 
Great Design
💡 
Makes Me Think

Feedback from the Judges:

Jackson Powell 👏 Sr. UX Designer at Providence Healthcare — Emoti-Con Judge
"...you never know what could be going on behind the scenes in someone's life."

This is so true and powerful. I think it's amazing you two are so perceptive and aware of how difficult life can be for teenagers. I know a bit about this as I have two teenage sons in High School. I think it's way harder to be in High School today than it was when I went and I thought it was awful then!

I love the UX strategy of mimicking a diary in the wireframes. Making the user interface give the impression of a diary makes me feel safe about writing my most inner thoughts and sharing them with others.

I thought you both did a great job of explaining the problem and the wireframes definitely give me a good idea of how the app works.

If I were an investor I would be very intrigued and interested in helping you both develop your MVP (or a Minimum Viable Product, which means the least amount of features a product needs to solve a problem).

One thing I would like to see fleshed out is how your app would keep users safe on the social side of the platform. It's hard to prevent people from abusing a powerful tool made for good. One way I can think of is setting up rules in the system that searches all messaging or communication between members for certain words before they are posted. If an inappropriate message was sent by user A, the app could temporarily disable that user's access until the case could be reviewed by a human to determine if there were bad intentions. Another feature idea is the ability for a user to report another user. Of course, even this feature could be misused. :)

I would also like to see how you two envisioned the user's account system (preferences, their stories, messaging system, etc.), onboarding (how they create an account), and browsing the library of stories. And would a user be able to edit or delete a journal entry they created?

To sum up, I think you both did a great job identifying a need and starting to solve it!

Peizhu Yuan 👏 Marketing & Communications Coordinator at Mouse — Emoti-Con Judge
Thank you for empowering the world of teens to speak up about their discomforts. I feel that the diary format greatly encourages the user to write as much as they can while encouraging the fact that they are free to express their stories in the way they want on this platform.

It would be nice to see that users can type/handwrite their stories so that it would look a bit more like a diary that is inclusive for those that like to draw out their feelings. And I would also suggest removing the name and subject part to give users more space to write out everything.

I also think that it'd be wonderful if there's a way to share/hide a certain entry for the community in the app just to give the user more choices.

This is such a great idea and I absolutely love your positive approach to solving this problem and raising awareness for it!

Miguel Asse 👏 Product and Business Strategy Lead, Analytics at Google — Emoti-Con Judge
Great job on highlighting an important issue - mental health issues with teenagers and children has only gotten more pronounced and visible with the COVID epidemic. This project does a great job of highlighting use cases for its users, and allowing them to share and find community.

I really liked the idea of sharing and being able to find other users with the same mental health challenges, this really helps address the stigma of talking about problems, and helps address feelings of loneliness. There's also a ton of research on the benefits of journaling, so great job there!

Two thoughts on feedback on things to think through / consider adding:

1. Privacy - Mental health is a very sensitive topic. If users use this app to journal, how do they know their information is secure. Is it tied to their real identity? Or will it be accessed with a password etc. Just something to think about!

2. Safety - If a user is trending towards behavior where they may need help, is there a way the app could intervene to provide them the information they need at the time for help. For example, if a user was writing self-harm thoughts, could the app bring up the national suicide hotline for them to call automatically?

Great job on a challenging topic - I really enjoyed what you built!

Feedback from the Community:

john 👏 a High School Student from New York
This was a cool project I liked the idea of it and how it was interactive
chime 👏 a High School Student
Great concept!!
👏 a Middle School Student
good job
👏 a Middle School Student
This project is amazing in many ways. It helps people get through day by day and lets them share feelings they don't usaully share.
John 👏 a High School Student from BASE
I feel like this is a great concept and will be helpful for many people to share their mental health journeys

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