Digital Health Research Methods and Tools: Suggestions and Selected Resources for Researchers

  • Kathleen GrayEmail author
  • Cecily Gilbert
Part of the Intelligent Systems Reference Library book series (ISRL, volume 137)


This chapter provides an overview of digital health research, aimed at people new to conducting investigations in this field who seek to engage seriously with patients, clients and consumers. Digital health is not a scientific discipline. This chapter argues that health and biomedical informatics offers a strong scholarly basis for research in this field, and it outlines the theoretical and conceptual frameworks, ethical considerations, research methods, and examples of tools applicable for studies of digital health interventions. Researchers from clinical, IT, engineering and similar domains who plan to undertake studies involving digital health applications will be introduced to methodologies such as using guidelines and standards, performance indicators, validated input models and outcome measures, and evaluation resources. In the specific area of consumer health informatics research, an increasing array of tools and methods exist to investigate the interaction between consumers and their health data. In addition this chapter discusses research methods with health apps, patient-generated health data, social media and wearable self-tracking devices. Practical advice is given on techniques such as critically appraising digital health research literature, primary data collection from devices and services, study reporting and publishing results.


Biomedical informatics Consumer health informatics Digital health Health informatics Research methods 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Health and Biomedical Informatics CentreThe University of MelbourneParkvilleAustralia

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