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Healthy habits re-imagined.

Native App & Web Portals


UX Research

Information Architecture

UX / Product Design



Copy Direction



Shavrick & Partners



Newtopia’s mission to promote better health through habit change relied exclusively on live interactions between its personal wellness coaches (known as "Inspirators") and program participants – a business model that’s difficult to scale.  

Shavrick & Partners was asked to help grow the business without growing the workforce, and brought me onboard to lead the UX and product design efforts.

A call-to-action: bridge the participant experience divide.

Since its brick-and-mortar beginnings, Newtopia has helped individuals achieve better health outcomes with their industry-leading, scientifically-backed, habit-change based educational programs and wellness coaching. Boasting strong adoption rates, high engagement and a Net Promoter Score of 54, their decades-long reputation of success, partnering with employers and health care plan providers to significantly reduce medical costs is well earned and deserved.
But while participants were raving about the Newtopia program, largely driven by their real-time, often offline interactions with Inspirators...

“I always thought I had fairly healthy habits with food and exercise. However, Newtopia has helped me develop an even better system. Now I am losing weight and feeling much healthier and stronger.”

“Newtopia has given me the push I needed to make small changes that have a big impact. Healthy living is for the long haul, not a quick fix. With the help of my Inspirator, I am so empowered.”

“My Inspirator was able to get me through very difficult, challenging times. I’m grateful he has shown me to be proud of my current progress. I’ve seen quite a difference and not just in my physical being.”

...ratings and reviews of the legacy Newtopia native app were abysmal, and a real threat to the company's otherwise stellar reputation.

Newtopia_Old App_edited.jpg



Google Play Icon.png

Google Play

App Store Icon.png

App Store

“This app is going to make me quit the program.”

One star is too generous, but I had to give it one, to write this review.”

“They need to work on the application more, it's not user friendly and it's hard to sign up.”

“...more for the health coach than it is for the end user.”

“One of the most inept and incomplete apps I’ve ever had to use.”

“This app is mostly useless.”


Our mission was now clear(er). To drive increased engagement and satisfaction while scaling the business, we knew we would need to create user experiences that both participants and Inspirators would love — and modeling interactions to automate the best of their one-on-one coaching experiences would be key.

Digging deep to gather insights.

We started by learning from stakeholders, Inspirators, participants and the marketplace — analyzing available marketing materials, industry reports and the existing Newtopia curricula, app and user data, as well as conducting our own primary research.


Registration Paths

Participant App / Portal

Inspirator Portal

Content Hub Demo

App / Portal User Guides

Personality Assessment

Genetic Reports & Data

Program Videos / Articles

Nutrition Framework

Behavioral Assessments


Participant Success Metrics

Participant Satisfaction Surveys

Customer Journey Maps

Feature Value Maps

Competitive Audits

NIH Studies

Global Health Institute Data


C-level Executives

Newtopia Inspirators

Brand & Marketing Team

Newtopia Nutritionists

Newtopia Medical Professionals


Listened to Recorded


Coaching Sessions

These key findings started to shape our thinking around how Newtopia's digital transformation could improve the participant and Inspirator experience.

Improve the onboarding and registration experience

Most disease prevention programs try to onboard users with a linear set of web forms — but asking the user for data in small gestures as part of a transparent process allows the user to start engaging right away.

Test and learn into optimization

Timing and frequency of messaging and programmatic content delivery is fundamental to the goals of engagement and scale — but most programs deliver based on a curriculum rather than personalized settings and behaviors. While the existing curricula could provide the baseline, incorporating multivariate messaging to test and learn into optimization would be key.

Make the experience of daily tracking and progress monitoring more enjoyable

Personal dashboards appear to make nutrition and fitness apps "sticky." Users desire daily indication of how they're doing and ongoing measurement of their progress, and prefer to input data and receive feedback in a personalized, engaging way.

Give participants autonomy over the coaching experience

Access to coaching is imperative to program success — but users may have varied needs throughout their health journey. For digital channels, users may at times prefer coaching on demand or SMS only, or no coaching at all.

Increase opportunities for engagement

Participant success is not determined by more coaching sessions — it's the engagement between coaching sessions that moves the needle.

Empower participants by providing a holistic wellness score

There is no brand offering an overall "wellness" score — combining nutrition, fitness, heart rate, sleep and weight data. Offering an aggregate score that combines these metrics could provide a more holistic and, ultimately, more useful assessment for participants and Inspirators to gauge progress on their health journey.

Putting our thinking to the test.

To validate and expand upon our assumptions, we went straight to the source: Newtopia participants — but with a limited budget and tight timeline, we needed to maximize our one opportunity to interface with potential end users of our product.
We conducted interviews to learn more about each participant's unique health journey, as well as their preferred devices and favorite nutrition and fitness tracking apps. We also observed and got feedback as they interacted with robust prototypes featuring distinct conceptual UX frameworks to measure the desirability and viability of features. Having a lean team meant I was solely responsible for building the prototypes, including envisioning their flow, architecture, design, interactions, animations and copy.

Concept A


This concept received the most positive reaction. It had the right balance of coach access and content, with comprehensive tracking features. Participants generally liked the slider, which allowed them to see only so many indicators at a time.

View Concept A screens / flow

Concept B


Most participants recognized the daily nutrition indicator colors as part of the Newtopia program's approach to classifying bad (red), neutral (yellow) and good (green) food choices — and the majority wanted to see the colors map to both daily tracking and overall progress indication.

View Concept B screens / flow

Concept C


A blended wellness score was very compelling for 3 out of 5 participants. Delineating between the activities and health tracking (top and bottom of the wheel) was a highly desirable concept — and most found this concept to provide the best method for access coaching features.

View Concept C screens / flow

We learned a lot, and our findings put us on the path to defining design challenges for the next-generation Newtopia app with even greater clarity.

Most Participants start off using a nutrition tracking app until they have learned about and adjusted their regular meals — then they stop, but there is no killer app for light nutrition tracking to keep most people engaged longer currently in market.

Participants reacted positively to a conceptual experience that maps Newtopia coaching and goal setting with aggregated activity and health tracking.

All participants are "trackers" — it is an intrinsic part of the journey for both learning and accountability.

Participant-Inspirator interaction happens largely by phone and email — but that is because the tools to communicate via video and chat, while available, are not seamlessly integrated into the app.

Goal setting and progress measurement are what link coaching to tracking, and there is a desire and opportunity to further tie participant daily usage of third-party apps and devices, particularly FitBit, directly to their goals.

Milestone, motivational and celebratory messages would be a highly welcome feature — even with this Inspirator-reliant segment, messaging could come from the app and not necessarily direct from their Inspirator.

Getting down to business.

After our exhaustive research phase, we were armed with the information and insights we needed to pinpoint our audience, refine our strategy, prioritize features and define requirements for a new Newtopia experience.

I developed personas and user journey maps, indicating at which points each was likely to lean on app verses live Inspirator interactions to achieve their goals.

Note: You can click on the images below to view in full screen mode.

And collaborated with my team to scope the work ahead, defining business requirements and prioritizing features for the new app and web portal.

Biz Reqs.png
Feature Prioritization.png

Then I got to work envisioning and documenting my ideas for the holistic app experience, from user flows and interactions to providing strategic direction for copy, design and animation styles, starting with some of the key tasks participants would need to complete — setting goals to establish and maintain healthier habits and tracking progress against those goals. After validating the direction with the Shavrick and Newtopia teams, I was finally on course to fully architect the Newtopia 2.0 experience.

Download Concept Validation Deck


Bringing Newtopia 2.0 to life.

I single-handedly produced 100+ pages of robust documentation to illustrate a holistic vision for Newtopia 2.0, as well as a synchronous administrator portal that would allow Inspirators to seamlessly interact with and monitor participants under their care. Following a mobile-first approach, I laid out every inch of the experience flow, functionality and design for the native app, then (in the interest of saving time and money) the minimum to communicate how to adapt the UX to the web portal, including but not limited to the following.

Note: These flows are huge! You'll have to zoom out and pan around to fully take them in. Also, once they load, feel free to click around to continue exploring the product design solution. Generally speaking, all the pink text is clickable and meant to guide you through the document.

App / portal architecture

Wires & Flows: App & Portal

Goals: Setting targets & tracking

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Program curricula & content

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

In-app chat

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Third-party app & device integration

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

App / Portal settings & personalization

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

In-app registration

Wires & Flows: App & Portal

Participant "diary"

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Participant profile

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

In-app video sessions

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Behavioral & progress assessments

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Recipe library

Wires & Flows: App | Portal


Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Progress: Logging & monitoring data

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Booking & managing coaching sessions

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Genetic profile

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Participant healthy habit "Challenges"

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

Log-in & password change

Wires & Flows: App | Portal

I even documented all the layouts and rules for the modular components to be deployed throughout both the app and portal experience, including comprehensive illustration of all relevant states, functionality and data displays, such as:

Here are some of the key — and my favorite — screens and flows from the experience. Once again, note that I provided all the copy and strategic direction included in these wireframes that would ultimately inform our modular UI design solution.

Note: You can click on the images below to view in full screen mode.

Post-Registration Dashboard View & App Tutorial
Participant Dashboard
Goal Setting (app, followed by portal)
Newtopia_Gallery_Set Goal-Portal_PolymathUX.png
Participant Diary (app, followed by portal)
Progress Monitoring
In-app Video Sessions
Participant Profile
Genetic Profile
Newtopia_Gallery_Genetic Profile_PolymathUX.png
Mood / Energy / Stress Level Check-in
Newtopia_Gallery_Daily Check In_PolymathUX.png
Third-party App & Device Synchronization
Newtopia_App_Device Sync.png
Contextual Messaging Module

Creating a synchronized Inspirator portal.

With the participant experience fully realized, I was able to leverage UX patterns and interactions from the native app and web portal to architect a new-and-improved experience for Inspirators, too. The seamless, synchronous integration of these administrative tools with the consumer-facing app/portal was key to scaling the business, providing a platform to facilitate meaningful in-app interactions between Inspirators and participants. Here are the highlights.

Note: You can click on the images below to view in full screen mode.

Participant Records Dashboard
Tracking / Managing Participant Progress
Newtopia_Gallery_Inspirator_Set Tracking_PolymathUX.png
Setting Goals for the Participant
Newtopia_Gallery_Inspirator_Set Goal_PolymathUX.png
Assigning / Reviewing Participant Assessments
Scheduling Participant Sessions
Communicating with Participants
Viewing Participant Diary Entries

Final touches: how it all came together in visual design.

Our animator, visual and motion designer (Santiago Gomez) took over from here, using my wireframes as a guide to flesh out and put the final brushstrokes on all the UI elements required to ensure development and deployment of Newtopia 2.0 met our vision — which spearheaded a brand refresh, too.

In the end, we delivered a dynamic, atomic UX/UI system to meet Newtopia’s immediate and evolving needs — a robust digital design toolbox to keep enrollment and onboarding, goal setting and progress monitoring, video conferencing and live chat, nutrition and activity tracking, third-party device and app integration, and other in-app features in sync with business requirements, coach requests and participant demands, now and into the future.

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To see the soon-to-be-released app in action, click the following link then scroll to find the "See a Demo" button in the "HCI: Personal Progress Tracking and Inspiration" section.

Click here to check out the Newtopia 2.0 demo.

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Click here to view full UX documentation for the Newtopia 2.0 product redesign.



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