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Service Design in Sleep Hygiene Practice: 

Exploring Co-creation of Value with College Students

Personal M.F.A Graduate Thesis | Project 

March-Nov, 2021 | Ongoing


01 / Area of Interest:  Why Sleep? 

We can't sleep well. I can't either.

I’m interested in this topic from a personal and academic level.

1. Sleep Disorder: The Problem


Sleep is a basic human need and is critical to both physical and mental health. Sleep disorder problems are becoming common in the United States, and college students represent one of the most sleep-deprived segments of the American population. As the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced "Insufficient sleep is a public health epidemic.” 

2. Service Design: The Solution

Also, as one of the college students in the United States, I have trouble falling asleep. I read about the common topic of sleep problems on social media, which has raised people’s awareness of avoiding negative sleep habitats, but even though there are amounts of “good sleep tips” around my life,  those tips didn't work well for me.

As a service design graduate student, I'm seeking to improve college students' sleep quality by applying service design methodologies to help them manage their sleep behaviors, environment, and sleep-related factors.

02 / Meet the Keywords:  Sleep Disorder, Value Co-creation, Service Design 

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Sleep Disorder: The Problem

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Value Co-creation
The Path

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Service Design
The Solution

The reasons cause sleep disorders 

Sleep disorder is a big problem around the world. Multiple reasons could cause sleep disorders, like sleep behaviors, sleep environment, and other personal sleep-related factors. One more thing is that those reasons are very complicated, random, and personality. For example, sometimes, one specific main reason could cause one student to have a sleep disorder. And sometimes, there are multiple reasons cause a person has sleep difficulties.
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Sleep hygiene as the possible solution

“Sleep hygiene (SH) refers to a list of behaviors, environmental conditions, and other sleep-related factors that can be adjusted as a stand-alone treatment or component of multimodal treatment for patients with insomnia.”           
                                                                                                                                            _________Stepanski & Wyatt, 2003, p. 217. 
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Value Co-creation as the path to solve the problem

Due to reasons cause sleep disorders are complicated, random, and personalized. Several reasons could cause sleep disorders, includes sleep environment, sleep behaviors, and other personal sleep-related factors. Therefore, collaborative with college students and other related stakeholders to understand their sleep disorder problem and provide a customized solution altogether as the key point of the thesis. 

03 / Research Plan  Why did you sleep not well?

Screening potential customers by a sequence of research activities, and co-create value with them.

To have a holistic understand of college student's sleep conditions, and find the real target customers who indeed have sleep disorders problems. The research plan includes three main parts in a sequence, sleep data collection (quantitative research), sleep behavior studies (qualitative research), and co-creation activities. 

2.1 Sleep Data Collection


The first research activity consisted of collecting people's sleep data to understand people's sleep conditions, find potential research co-workers, and collecting their basic sleep information for the next co-creation activities.

First Round: One-night Sleep Data Collection-recruiting from social media randomly.

Second Round: One-week Sleep Data Collection-potential co-workers from the first round.

2.2 Self-identification of Sleep Quality

The “Memory Basin” questions only contained three groups of questions “what’s the first/ second/ third single word that comes to your mind about last night's sleep?”, and “please select your word attributes- positive, negative, or neutral.” 
I set up a set of “Memory Basin” questions as a part of the Sleep Data Collection Survey. Compared their sleep data tracker results and their personal sleep feeling to generate a holistic understanding of their sleep condition.


What can I learn from the Sleep Data Collection and Sleep Self-identification Survey research works: 

At this stage,  I combined and compared two sets of objective and subjective data from the device sleep tracker and a follow-up survey to have a holistic understanding of the participant's sleep condition. 

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By reading the key information from the Sleep Cycle app the follow-up survey, I could calculate and divided the sleep journey into four parts, includes the plan to sleep (1), prepare to sleep (2-3-4), before asleep (3), and fall asleep (4).  Meanwhile,  by comparing the asleep time and sleep feeling, I could have a basic understanding of participant's sleep quality (5).

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Overview of Sleep Journey 

Collect and calculate all data via Google Form and Google Sheet.

Key Finding:


2.3 Co-creation Activities

Under Construction 

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2.4 ideation activities 

Under Construction 

Research finding
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