The Haptic Remembrance Book: Design Process


Three vertically aligned photos: Older adults, family members, care staff

Collaborated with Mediva, Inc and observed staff during home visits and nursing home visits 

Interviewed nursing staff in the United States and Japan as well as recently retired individuals



I created personas for nursing home residents

I then thematically analyzed the observations and interview transcripts

Categorized results into pain points



Led a two-part design workshop with staff from Mediva, Inc

We created storyboards and concept posters

We defined important design elements


Testing Feedback

"My grandfather had Alzheimer’s disease and I think this could have an incredible impact on that community!"
- Female, 20s


"This is a great design. I think it would be very comforting." - Female, 60s

Service Design

Beyond providing just a tool, this research proposes that long-term care facility stakeholders use the design process itself as a service for older adults to improve their quality of life. Creating the book together with older adults can serve as an activity as well as a means of strengthening community bonds and mutual understanding.

3 Phases


Interviewing: using reminiscent therapy 

Content Creation:  with haptic tools like the Techtile Toolkit

Reflecting: reinforcing the positive effects created during the other phases



The interview phase functions similarly to, or can be used in conjunction with, reminiscent therapy activities. Previously created, or a Haptic Remembrance Book about the interviewer can be used to initiate/inspire conversation (the interviewer can curate as well as negotiate with the interviewee the topics discussed)

Content Creation


This phase can be reflective of an art therapy session. Similar to traditional art therapies, the content creation of the Haptic Remembrance Book stresses the importance of the physicality of the building medium. A key difference is that the participant expresses through somatosensation as opposed to charcoals or paints.