Smartphone Apps Training for Medical Applications


The NSERC CREATE funded “Biomedical Engineering Smartphone Training” program (CREATE-BEST) provides professional training and practical employment-ready skills to engineering graduate students to meet the needs of the growing mHealth marketplace and enable innovation. mHealth is the practice of clinical healthcare and public health supported by mobile devices, which includes mobile device applications for collecting community and clinical health data; healthcare information delivery to practitioners, researchers, and patients; real-time patient monitoring; and direct provision of care via mobile technology.

The potential types of mHealth applications are wide ranging, from digital epidemiology to monitoring patient gait. With proper design, the app becomes an information and communication bridge that serves to close the gap between the home and the clinic, granting more freedom to patients, lower costs to the healthcare system, and gapless health monitoring for clinicians.

Three universities collaborate in CREATE-BEST.

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Who can join us?

Undergraduate, Masters, PhD, and Post-Doctoral Fellows in Engineering, Computer Science, Science, or health related disciplines can join CREATE-BEST.

How long is the training period?

MSc students: 2 years
PhD students: 4 years
Post-Doctoral Fellows: 2 years

Interested in participating in the program?

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  • Create mHealth smartphone apps from A to Z.

  • Design and implement validation methods that conform with healthcare ethics boards.

  • Identify a commercialization pathway to bring a mHealth app to the appropriate market.

  • Share your results and ideas with multidisciplinary audiences, researchers, industry, patients and end-users, etc.

The CREATE-BEST program enhances graduate student training by providing employment ready skills and knowledge to meet the needs of the growing mHealth marketplace. The program provides essential learning opportunities for app creation, oral and written communication, collaboration and teamwork, ethics, regulatory systems, project management and adaptability, entrepreneurship, clinical experiences, and industry internship opportunities.

For example, job shadowing placements immerse the student in the user environment, thereby strengthening a student's understanding of "real world" clinical environments and mHealth needs as they work with healthcare professionals and observe interactions with their patients.

The Pitch-an-App event enables students to strengthen their communication skills as they identify and articulate key messages to an audience of experts, industry, multidisciplinary clinicians, and non-specialists.

The Design Sprint hones the student's ability for team work, project management, and adapting app designs to end-user needs (based on knowledge gained while job-shadowing).

Traditional internships further a student's understanding of the work-place, technical skill requirements, team work, and interpersonal skills required for success.

the team

Natalie Baddour

University of Ottawa
Department Chair and Professor of Mechanical Engineering
  • Mathematical modeling and methods
  • Dynamics
  • Vibrations
  • Photoacoustics

Adrian Chan

Carleton University
Associate Dean and Professor in the Department of Systems and Computer Engineering
  • Biomedical signal quality analysis
  • Signal processing methods
  • Biomedical monitoring
  • Accessibility and disability

James Green

Carleton University
Associate Professor in the Department of Systems and Computer Engineering
  • Bioinformatics, proteomics, and prediction of protein structure, function, interaction, and post-translational modification
  • Machine intelligence, pattern classification, data mining
  • Development of novel assistive technology and devices

Voicu Groza

University of Ottawa
Associate Professor in the School of Information Technology and Engineering
  • Biomedical measurements and instrumentation
  • Reconfigurable embedded systems
  • Smart sensors networks

Edward Lemaire

University of Ottawa
Professor, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
  • Technologies to enhance mobility for people with physical disabilities
  • Wearable technologies to improve mobility assessment and outcome measurement
  • Biomechanical investigation of pathological human movement

Liam Peyton

University of Ottawa
Vice-Dean Graduate Studies for the Faculty of Engineering
  • Model-driven data integration and mobile app development to support business processes and performance management.
  • Decision support, quality assurance and privacy, service oriented architecture, cloud computing, complex event processing

Abdulmotaleb El Saddik

University of Ottawa
Distinguished Professor at the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and University Research Chair in Ambient Interactive Media and Communications
  • Haptics
  • Service-oriented architectures
  • Collaborative environments
  • Ambient interactive media and communications

David Buckeridge

McGill University
Associate Professor, Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Occupational Health and CIHR Applied Public Health Chair eHealth Interventions
  • Informatics of public health surveillance
  • Detecting disease cases automatically from electronic health records
  • Detecting epidemics rapidly from multiple data streams

Robyn Tamblyn

McGill University
Professor, Department of Medicine and Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Occupational Health
  • Identifying modifiable determinants of adverse events and improved health outcomes
  • Developing and evaluating computer-enabled interventions to address these determinants
  • Developing and evaluating novel surveillance systems

Hussein Al Osman

University of Ottawa
Associate Professor at the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
  • Affective Computing
  • Human Computer Interaction
  • Serious Games
  • Multimedia Systems

Namrata Bagaria

University of Ottawa
Student Member of Program Committee

Faisal Arafsha

Program Manager


Learn more about the program.

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