The Role of a Virtual Coach in Improving Adherence to an Activity Program for Overweight Adults (StepUp)
Hypothesis: Overweight subjects using a Virtual Coach will demonstrate improved adherence to an exercise regime.
This study is designed to examine the effect of a computer program called a "Virtual Coach" and find out if it helps people become more active. This program acts as a kind of a personal trainer and will give you feedback. All participants in the study will receive an activity monitor to wear during the study and a website to use to track activity. Half of the participants will also receive the virtual coach software. This software will have to be downloaded onto your computer, and we will ask that you check in with the coach using the software three times a week for 12 weeks. The group you will be placed in will be selected by chance.
|Study Design:||Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
|Official Title:||The Role of a Virtual Coach in Improving Adherence to an Activity Program for Overweight Adults|
- The primary outcome being measured is the level of activity monitored by the activity monitor. Control and Intervention subjects will be encouraged to wear the activity monitor on a daily basis for the 12 week course of the study. [ Time Frame: 12 weeks ]
- Change in subject weight. Subjects will be weighed at their first study visit and their final visit. [ Time Frame: 12 weeks ]
- Change in subject waist circumference. Subjects will be measured at their first study visit and their final visit [ Time Frame: 12 weeks ]
- Subject rating on the working alliance inventory score [ Time Frame: 12 weeks, assessed at the end of the study ]
- Changes in self-efficacy, quality of or readiness to change (as measured through surveys at the beginning and end of the study). [ Time Frame: 12 weeks ]
|Study Start Date:||June 2008|
|Study Completion Date:||September 2008|
|Primary Completion Date:||September 2008 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)|
The intervention being tested, the Virtual Coach, is an automated empathic computer agent which will run on patient's home computer and engage the patient in dialogues to deliver personalized feedback, education and coaching based on physiological data recorded by an activity monitor.
Other: Virtual Coach software
The intervention being tested, the Virtual Coach, is an automated empathic computer agent which will run on patient's home computer and engage the patient in dialogues to deliver personalized feedback, education and coaching based on physiological data.
Active Comparator: Control
The control group will use an activity monitor and will have access to a website to monitor activity, but will not receive the Virtual Coach program.
Other: Activity monitor and website
The control group will use an activity monitor and a website to track activity levels.
Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00792207
|United States, Massachusetts|
|Partners Health Care Center for Connected Health|
|Boston, Massachusetts, United States, 02114|
|Principal Investigator:||Alice Watson, MD,MPH||Massachusetts General Hospital, Partners Center for Connected Health, Harvard Medical School|