Thesis subject

Thesis subject: Evaluation of the impact of (un)expected rewards on user engagement in a health promotion context

Despite the many mHealth solutions available, it remains unclear what their success factors are. Specifically, there has been controversy on the effectiveness of extrinsic rewards. In a recent study we have found that customised extrinsic rewards can engage participants significantly in a health promotion context. Still it remains unclear how this reward may be customised best? Based on this previous study, we hypothesise that especially unexpected rewards foster to participant’s motivation in a health promotion context.

Evaluate whether unexpected (extrinsic) rewards are more effective in engaging participants in a health promotion campaign than foreseeable (extrinsic) rewards.

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You will be hosting a health promotion campaign among staff members at your university using the digital health promotion platform GameBus (see You will randomise the campaign participants into (at least) two different groups that receive a slightly different treatment. In this case, one group (group A) will be notified that they may win a reward when halfway through the campaign, if they successfully complete the program that was offered until then. Participants of the second group (group B) also receive a reward if they meet these conditions, only are they not notified up front of the opportunity of winning a reward.


After hosting this campaign, you will be able to determine whether group A has been more engaged in the campaign than group B before receiving the reward, or vice versa. Also you will be able to determine which group is more engaged after receiving the reward.

If you choose to accept this challenge you will be welcomed in an enthusiastic team. Furthermore, you may re-use the entire repository of recruitment, marketing and health promotion materials the GameBus Team has acquired already.

If you are interested in executing this research, please reach out to
Dr. Monique Simons via