A web platform fosters online social well-being via an integrated chatroom design with advanced generative AI capabilities.

Mind Mate


Our Prompt


March - May 2023


Social Web


UX Designer


Data Analyst

Software Engineer


UX Design Lead


User Interviews

Journey Mapping

Usability Testing

Literature Review

Competitive Analysis


Many mental therapy platforms lack active listening strategies, which results in a failure to promote empathetic conversations between users. And users often struggle with selecting appropriate resources.


I focused on conducting comprehensive research, aligning it with design principles, and crafting user interfaces for interactions

Covid-19 added extra layers of stress to everyone, and many people felt isolated amidst their negative spiral of emotions. However, there are barriers to seeking mental health help.

Our team bridges the fields of psychology and technology and helps promote social well-being in the online community with an easily-accessible and helpful platform.

Research Phase

Chatbots could enhance empathy in peer-to-peer conversations, particularly for volunteers who struggle with offering empathetic responses.

We conducted literature review of 12 peer-reviewed papers to justify the gaps in online mental support platform we were aiming to fill, and the challenges of language model in mental well-being .

Foundational Research


Support seekers might feel uneasy after discovering that responses are co-created by chatbots and that empathy is "simulated


Chatbot itself lacks the human empathy and has the potential of harm if it provides inaccurate or harmful advice


Privacy, confidentiality, and security are identified as significant concerns regarding digital mental health services


We also interviewed 14 people who have used mental wellness support platform to understand users’ pain points and motivations when chatting with peer supporters

Social interactions and talking about their feelings with friends help them feel less alone and less anxious

Social interactions and talking about their feelings with friends help them feel less alone and less anxious


Need active learning from a sincere person but not providing superficial solutions




The key to become a long term user is to establish a connection with the platform

Personas & User Journey

To remain objective as we ideated solutions, we derived two persona for the two distinct user needs of the help seekers, and one persona to represent the mental health supporter.

We then synthesized our interviews into a consolidated journey map. This revealed opportunities that we looked into addressing:


Through the consolidated journey map and personas, our team discovered the following insights:

People want to receive constructive advises instead of a superficial solution that can be provided by anyone

Insight 1

People expect to see obvious emotional feedback from the mental supporter

Insight 2

People need to establish trust first and then move on to conversations

Insight 3

People value both emotional validation and professional answers

Insight 4


We looked into existing solutions that provide ways for users to seek for mental wellness support and compared the key features for each.


How might we foster the conversations happening between the peer listeners and help-seekers with the support of the ChatGPT-based conversational assistant and also assist help-seekers to search for resources on their own?




Reflecting on our core values and how we live up to them provides a boost to the human psyche that empowers motivation and persistence.

We apply this theory to encourage our listeners to increase their level of engagement

Self-Affirmation Theory

This psychology theory emphasizes the importance of empathetic and non-judgmental listening.

We would apply it by creating information that encourage users to express their feelings and thoughts openly.

Active Listening Theory

Implement feedback loops that allow users to provide input on their experience and the platform's effectiveness.

We would use this feedback to continuously improve the services.

Feedback Mechanisms

Individuals learn by observing, and imitating the behaviors and emotional reactions of others.

In addition to the online supporter, we would also create community forums or support groups where users can learn from each other's experiences and share insights

Social Learning Theory

Deciding on the solution

We refined our design direction and developed a prototype with two key components:

A ChatGPT-based plugin designed to help peer listeners provide responses using active listening skills.

A social web design that integrates both searching and chatting functionalities for users and assisted chatroom for listeners.


Entrance Page Iteration

Visual elements make the entrance page more visually appealing and engaging for users, especially the first time user.

We’ve conducted 3 rounds of prototype sessions with 30 participants that determined the usability of our prototype and guided us toward each iteration. Below shows the iterations we made based on the insights from prototype sessions.

Brose Listeners Page Iteration

We added an explanation of different type of listeners to allow user make the choice based on their need. In this iteration, we focused on the information hierarchy and minimalist design.

Plugin Iteration (On instagram)

Based on user’s feedback, we realized user wants more transparency and controls over the recommended sentence.


What is Mind Mate?

Start the Mind Mate Journey

Mind Mate is an online mental wellness support platform, which not only eliminated the challenges that help seekers might encountered due to various social and logistical barriers but also promoted the effectiveness of advices provided by the supporters.

Help seekers will be welcomed by the interactive welcome page, which establishes a soothing and healing environment through the use of a distinct color theme.

Explore the Chatroom & Resources

Motivated by Interactive Plant

Assisted by the Plugin

Help seekers can select the listener that best fits their needs, we will reassurance their experience by proactively asking for rating.
With a thoughtful design of information hierarchy, help seekers have access to hundreds of articles that provides mental health recommendation.

We want to encourage listeners by visualizing how becoming a mental wellness supporter is like planting the seed of empathy and care.
With each conversation, you nurture and water that seed, watching it grow into a sturdy tree of support, providing shade and strength to those in need.
They can view their support history and feedback from here as well.

The listeners can click the M icon and wait for the response from the plugin if they are not sure about their reply. The plugin will assist the listener in determining if the criteria for active listening are met.
Listeners have the flexibility of
1) enable or disable the alternative message function
2) input their chat examples to receive alternative messages in a similar language style
3) customize the criteria (active listening skill descriptions) that GPT will learn from.


Despite the challenging constraints of a tight timeline and the first collaboration I've had with a developer, this project proved to be exceptionally rewarding, offering me a valuable learning experience!

Diverse perspectives and expertise contribute to more innovative and well-rounded solutions


Being open to feedback and embracing an iterative design process leads to continuous growth and refinement in UX design


Designing with the user in mind is not just a principle but a fundamental truth


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© 2023 By Zoey Ye