Everyone takes a different road through the valley of grief, but nobody should walk it alone: Personalising an online-delivered grief intervention



Type of assignment

Graduation project (MSc)

Internal or external?


How many students possible?


Own data collection or existing data?

Own data collection

Type of research (qualitative empirical, quantitative empirical, mixed-method, literature review)






Within the AAL project LEAVES, we have an opportunity for a graduation project starting in September or October 2021. We are in the midst of developing an online service for mourning older adults that features a conversational agent and adapts its content to the user. In a previous study, we brainstormed adaptation mechanisms with an international expert panel in the field of grief and eHealth, involving experts from academia and clinical practice.


The study yielded a conceptual adaptation model which we now aim to apply to the recently deployed minimum viable product (MVP) of the LEAVES service. The model defines four types of adaptations on an abstract level (e.g., changing the order in which the user is exposed to intervention content). We are looking for a student who specifies the model for our existing software and designs prototypes (visual and/or functional) that are to be evaluated either in a qualitative fashion with our target group (i.e., (mourning) older adults) and/or clinical experts with respect to user experience and/or expected clinical efficacy.


Who are we looking for?

We are looking for an enthusiastic student with a background in design, computer science, psychology, or human-computer interaction, an interest in (mental) eHealth, and (software, UI) prototyping skills. Speaking Dutch is not required, but desirable. In addition, for the duration of the graduation project, you will be part of the LEAVES consortium, meaning that you will join our international project meetings and gain insight into the activities of a European research project. Being well-versed in the English language is necessary since all communication between consortium partners takes place in English.



University supervisor

To be determined


External supervisor

Lena Brandl, MSc, PhD candidate

Roessingh Research and Development

University of Twente, HMI Department



l.brandl@{rrd.nl, utwente.nl}




van Velsen, L., Cabrita, M., Op den Akker, H., Brandl, L., Isaac, J., Suárez, M., ... & Canhão, H. (2020). LEAVES (optimizing the mentaL health and resiliencE of older Adults that haVe lost thEir spouSe via blended, online therapy): Proposal for an Online Service Development and Evaluation. JMIR research protocols, 9(9), e19344.