Readings are subject to change. Please always check the online reading schedule.

CS 4803/8803: Personal Health Informatics

Instructor: Jennifer G. Kim
Email: at cc
Office: CODA 1578B
Office Hours: After class, or email for an appointment.
Location: Engineering Sci and Mechanics 201
Time: Wednesday & Friday 2:00 – 3:15pm
Schedule: Class and reading schedule

Learning Objectives

This course will cover the design of personal health and wellness technologies. Using the personal health informatics model, we will learn various challenges in designing technologies for personal health data collection (e.g., step count, heart rate, or food intake etc.), integration, self-reflection, and behavior change. Going further, students will understand design issues in sharing personal health data and discuss design guidelines for collaborative data collection, reflection, and care. Students will apply the design issues taught during lecture to a semester-long personal health application design project.

Assignments and Grading

In this course, the requirements for graduate students differ from those for undergraduate students in two key ways. First, graduate students are expected to complete assignments that demand advanced research skills, such as the ability to formulate and articulate arguments and discuss data analysis results based on existing research. Second, graduate students are expected to present research papers and lead class discussions, thus developing skills in research presentation and scholarly communication.

Your work will be graded on a list of criteria (specified on the assignment) such as quality of writing, completeness, insight into design issues, insight into health issues, etc. For each criterion, you will receive either a check plus, check, or check minus. Most criterion will receive a check. A plus means "you impressed me." A minus means the assignment is incomplete, incorrect, or sloppy in some fashion with respect to that criterion. Pluses and minues are combined to give your grade for the assignment. For most assignments, you start out half way between a B+ and A-. One plus makes it an A-; one minus makes it a B+. These are general guidelines to let you know what to expect. Grading on specific assignments may differ.

English as a Second Language

If Engish is not your first language, you may request to not be graded on your writing for a particular individual assignment. This means you won't be penalized for bad writing, but you also won't get credit for good writing. To take advantage of this option, you must mark "ESL" (English as a Second Language) on the first page of your assignment/paper. This option is not available for group assignments. We still of course expect you to try to write in correct English, and will do our best to offer useful feedback on your writing.

Absence Policy (Late Work)

Late assignments will be accepted with a deduction of 10% per 24-hour period starting after the due date submission time. There will be no make-up work provided for missed assignments. Presentations may not be late. Responses to readings may not be late either; they serve to energize class discussion. Of course, emergencies (illness, family emergencies) will happen. In those instances, please contact the Dean of Students office. The Dean of Students is equipped to verify emergencies and pass confirmation on to all your classes. For consistency, we ask all students to do this in the event of an emergency.

Academic Integrity

Georgia Tech aims to cultivate a community based on trust, academic integrity, and honor. Students are expected to act according to the highest ethical standards. All students enrolled at Georgia Tech, and all its campuses, are to perform their academic work according to standards set by faculty members, departments, schools and colleges of the university; and cheating and plagiarism constitute fraudulent misrepresentation for which no credit can be given and for which appropriate sanctions are warranted and will be applied. For information on Georgia Tech's Academic Honor Code, please visit Any student suspected of cheating or plagiarizing on a group project report, assignment, or paper discussion report will be reported to the Office of Student Integrity, who will investigate the incident and identify the appropriate penalty for violations.

Accommodations for Students with Disabilities

If you are a student with learning needs that require special accommodation, contact the Office of Disability Services at (404)894-2563 or, as soon as possible, to make an appointment to discuss your special needs and to obtain an accommodations letter. Please also e-mail me as soon as possible in order to set up a time to discuss your learning needs.


Assignments and ideas on this syllabus build on those from everyone who has taught it before, especially Lauren Wilcox. The design and materials of this course were either inspired by or adapted from a variety of courses from my colleagues and mentors here at Georgia Tech and at other universities, including: