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Algorithm development and AI

Psychology and technology

Wearables and monitoring systems



Stress Tracking in Real life with multimodal Algorithms using data from Commercial wearables in a Student and Staff population

Monitoring Stress Using Commercial Wearables and Self-Reporting in a Student and Staff Population


From until

Supported by

Industrieel Onderzoeksfonds (C3-project 2 Jaar - referentie C3/23/043)


Stress is a complex and individual experience that affects both the autonomic nervous system and subjective perception. Commercially available wearables can provide new scientific insights into stress monitoring. For this purpose, we need data from daily life, including physiological data and self-assessment data. Subsequently, we apply machine learning and data mining techniques. The StressTRACS project will enable companies to enhance current mental health applications by incorporating a new, evidence-based data stream for stress identification.

The role of the Centre of Expertise Care and Well-being?

Research Group Mobilab & Care is the project leader of the StressTRACS project and will be responsible for project coordination and the development of the stress monitoring algorithm. This algorithm is based on physiological responses from the autonomic nervous system (ANS). 

Research group People and Well-being (Psychology and Technology) is responsible for designing the strategy to map the subjective experience of stress. Additionally, they coordinate data collection in daily life using the stress monitoring algorithm and self-reporting.

Role KULeuven M3-Biores?

At the start of the project, we will evaluate a number of wearables under controlled conditions with healthy volunteers, students, and staff from KU Leuven and Thomas More. This evaluation will take place in strictly controlled laboratory conditions within the climate chambers of M3-BIORES. Additionally, M3-BIORES will work on a stress monitoring algorithm based on the homeostatic regulator, and the results will be combined with those from Mobilab & Care’s stress monitoring algorithm.


Approximately 45% of Flemish students experience regular to constant study-related stress, and 20% have a psychological problem with a significant impact on daily life, according to a survey by the Flemish Association of Students (VVS). Inspired by these results, we monitor students from the KU Leuven association.

About one in three Flemish individuals owns a wearable device for continuous monitoring of behavior and physiology. However, few of these widely available devices use scientifically validated algorithms to detect stress. This discourages companies from integrating this technology into existing stress and mental health applications.


The StressTRACS project aims to elevate current mental health applications by incorporating a new, evidence-based data stream for stress identification. We utilize commercially available wearables in combination with user information



Bert Bonroy

Fascinated by how technology can support care today and tomorrow.


Romy Sels

Specialised in using technology to optimise the rehabilitation process.


Glen Debard

Researcher committed to introducing technology in (mental) health care for young and old.


Nele De Witte

Nele De Witte (PhD) is a researcher in the People and Well-being research group, research line Psychology and technology. Her areas of expertise include wearables and XR. She is also the scientific coordinator of LiCalab.


Toon Colman

Toon Colman (MSc) is a researcher in the People and Well-being group, research line Psychology and technology. As an experimental psychologist, he wants to leverage his methodological expertise for the benefit of (mental) health.