Motivational Interviewing Novice Demonstration (MIND)

2016 - Present
Project Leaders: Skip Rizzo and Matthew Trimmer

Download a PDF overview.

The Motivational Interviewing Novice Demonstration (MIND) provides future therapists the opportunity to advance their skills in treating service members, veterans, or military-impacted family members through practice with a simulated patient.

Developed in collaboration with Veterans Affairs (VA) Puget Sound, the University of Washington Department of Psychology, and the University of Southern California Institute for Creative Technologies (USC ICT), MIND features research technologies such as virtual humans and intelligent tutoring to create a challenging yet engaging learning experience in which users can hone their proficiency in Motivational Interviewing (MI).

MIND replicates a therapist-client interaction with a simulated veteran using a multiple-choice-style progression through a therapy session. During the MIND experience, users interact with a virtual patient named Mike Baker. Mike is a National Guard veteran who recently returned from deployment. In the first scenario, Mike discusses the problems he’s having at home, but he is not convinced that talking to a therapist is right for him. The second scenario is a follow-up appointment with Mike, which is set a couple of months after the first. He admits he is still having problems at home, which may be the result of substance abuse.

During both scenarios, the encounter proceeds with a branching storyline as providers respond to a selection of multiple-choice clinical responses. The virtual human patient speaks audibly to the provider and his tone, demeanor and nonverbal behavior indicate how well, or poorly, the interaction is going based on the provider’s utilization of MI skills. The MIND software tracks the practice scenarios to generate a summarized and detailed After Action Review (AAR) based on each provider’s performance. At the conclusion of each practice scenario, the therapist is taken to the summarized review of their performance, and will then proceed to a detailed AAR that shows performance at each decision point, facilitates review of the other response options offered, and provides corresponding feedback on why a given response was ideal, mixed, or suboptimal in each instance.

MIND leverages a software platform previously developed for the Department of Defense under the direction of the Army Research Lab Simulation and Training Technology Center (ARL STTC).