John Rooksby

John Rooksby

I am a lecturer in Computer and Information Science at Northumbria University. I have a PhD in Computer Science from the University of Manchester and have held fellowship/associate positions at the University of Edinburgh, the University of Glasgow, University of St Andrews and Lancaster University.

Read my blog

Teaching and supervision


  • Level 6 (final Year): Web Applicaiton Integration
  • Level 6 (final Year): Cloud Computing
  • Level 5 (2nd year): Web Programming
  • Level 4 (1st year): Web Technology

PhD Students:

  • 2014-19: Claire McCallum - Evaluating the Impact of Physical Activity Apps and Wearables: an Interdisciplinary Investigation of Research Designs and Methods
  • I am happy to hear from prospective PhD students, particularly people interested in Human Computer Interaction and Digital Health.

Undergraduate and MSc Supervision:

  • I supervise projects in web, mobile and games development.


Below are details of some of my recent projects.

Football Fans and Betting (FFAB)

app sketch

In this project (NIHR, £629,765) we will be conducting a feasibility study and randomised pilot trial of a group-based intervention to reduce gambling involvement among male football fans

See project information

Co-designing a mobile application with football fans to promote physical activity

app sketch

We are exploring ways that football-fan related smartphone apps can encourage middle-aged men to engage in more physical activity (e.g. walking, cycling and playing football). This project is funded by the EPSRC Get A Move On Network+.

See project website

TV Aerial Simulator

TV Aerial Simulator Screenshot and Users

This VR game allows young people to experience home life of the 1970s. While one player watches television, the other player has to adjust a TV aerial to keep the signal strong. (This game was made during Global Game Jam 2019).

See game website

Prototyping Population Health Analytics

In this research conducted at Desgin Informatics in Edinburgh, I explored the acceptability of mobile sensing and digital phenotyping for student mental health. The work resulted in the paper "Student Perspectives on Digital Phenotyping: The Acceptability of Using Smartphone Data to Assess Mental Health", which will be presented at CHI 2019.

Active Minds

This workshop at Queen Elizabeth Univeristy Hospital in Glasgow brought together people interested in technology for mental health, physical activity, accessibility (and more) to discuss ideas and synergies.

See video report

European Fans in Training (EuroFIT)

EuroFIT logo

Twenty million fans attend top division football games each week and many more watch on TV. Our social innovation is to attract people to lifestyle change through the personal connection and loyalty to the club they support. EuroFIT is supported by UEFA and top football clubs. My role in EuroFIT has been to design and deliver the app "MatchFIT".

See project website


Quped app (cropped)

Quped is a pedometer app for iOS. The app counts steps, sets personal goals and supports social comparison. The app has been designed to operationalise theories from behavioural change and to collect scientific quality data for researchers. I've worked closely with Parvin Asadzadeh and Claire McCallum on this app. We have published a paper at OzCHI 2016 from this work, focusing on consent.

App Store

UX for mHealth

What Works in Digital Health workshop

I was funded by SICSA (Scottish Informatics and Computer Science Alliance) to organise events on UX for mHealth during 2015/16. Two key events were What Works in Digtal Health? (July 2015, Glasgow) and Screens in interaction (October 2015, Edinburgh).


ScreenLife app (cropped)

Screenlife was a cross platform application for quantifying day to day screen time on laptops, tablets and smartphones. I worked with Parvin Asadzadeh, Mattias Rost and Alistair Morrison on designing and developing this app. Our user study was published in CHI 2016 as "Personal Tracking of Screen Time on Digital Devices".

Curtains Messenger

Curtains app (cropped)

Curtains Messenger is a novel text messaging app for iOS and Android that supports synchronous conversations (you can only read and write messages if the other person is also in the app). This app was originally built by Martin Podlubny for his dissertation project. The work was presented at CSCW 2018.

App Store Android