A user centered design approach to development of an online self-management program for cancer survivors: Springboard Beyond Cancer

Corinne R. Leach, Michael A. Diefenbach, Sara Fleszar, Catherine M. Alfano, Robert L. Stephens, Kara Riehman, Shawna V. Hudson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations


Objective: The American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute launched and evaluated a personalized online program leveraging behavioral science principles to help people self-manage physical and emotional symptoms, improve communication skills, and lead healthier lives during and after a cancer diagnosis. Methods: Cancer survivors were recruited from an academic medical and a community clinical setting (N = 40) to complete in-person user testing of the Springboard Beyond Cancer website, which included action decks and content to promote self-management. Action decks were printable or savable collections of information and action steps related to a cancer topic or treatment side effect. Participants performed structured tasks to evaluate the program's content and usability. Comments and reactions were recorded, and qualitative thematic analyses were conducted. Results: Most participants successfully found information about fatigue (95%), pain (83%), sexual side effects (90%), and support groups (85%). Survivors, particularly those in treatment, found information on the site to be clear, concise, and meeting their needs. Use of action decks to create self-management plans was inconsistent. Survivors reported needing more instruction and support within the program on how to best utilize enhanced functionality in action decks to prioritize their most pressing concerns. Conclusions: Early stakeholder engagement throughout the multiple phases of prototyping and deployment are needed to fully maximize end user engagement. Providing actionable self-management content and activating tools to cancer survivors via an eHealth program is a feasible and scalable approach to increasing access to self-management tools and addressing cancer survivor needs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2060-2067
Number of pages8
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 1 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Oncology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


  • cancer
  • cancer survivor
  • oncology
  • self-management
  • telemedicine


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