First research results from PhD student Samantha Ewart


A couple of weeks ago, we wrote about Samanta Ewart, PhD student at the School of Communication Arts, University of Western Sydney (Australia), who is using the AudioCubes for her Phd research.

Together with supervisor Dr. Garth Paine, Samantha researches how new forms of interactive music technology can distract teenage patients from boredom within hospital to help promote wellbeing. To answer this research question, she is using the AudioCubes, or Music Cubes as she calls them in her research.

Last week, Samantha sent us some more details about the results from this pilot study which took place in September/October 2010 at the Westmead Children’s Hospital (Sydney, Australia). During this pilot study she measured together with her supervisor Dr. Garth Paine the level of engagement and distraction from boredom of adolescent patients through the use of AudioCubes.

Pilot Study by Samantha Ewart

Fourteen patients with a mean age of 15.5 years participated at the pilot study. By using observation checklists as well as before and after feedback forms (wellbeing scales), she was able to measure and compare the level of boredom before and after a session with the AudioCubes.

After using the AudioCubes: 10 out of 14 patients showed substantially reduced levels of boredom, reported as being not bored or not bored at all. All the patients who participated in the pilot study enjoyed the AudioCubes, and 11 of them indicated that they would like to use them more often if possible.

Based on these results, Samantha concludes that there was a significant improvement in the participants wellbeing, illustrated by the level of engagement and distraction from boredom as a result of using AudioCubes.

More information about Samantha Ewart's research can be found on her blog: Interactive Music for Distraction, a PhD journey.