What is it about?

This study evaluated whether it was feasible, acceptable and effective to use a mental health app to manage stress among Chinese school adolescents. The app was developed based on Chinese school adolescents' needs and preferences, and then reviewed by students, teachers and academics. The study tracked the mental health status of two groups of students, where one group did not use the app and the other group used the app, for 19 weeks. It was found that using the app could significantly reduce the stress level of these students, even during the most stressful time, such as final term exams. Also, the effect was maintained after 8 weeks after not using the app anymore. Except for stress level, the study also monitored their levels of anxiety, depression, coping behaviors, and mental well-being. Read the whole manuscript for all the results!

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Why is it important?

It provides evidence base and services as exploratory efforts for using digital mental health interventions for managing mental health issues among Chinese adolescents. Given the lack of the workforce and high demand for mental health services among this population, policy makers and educators may consider utilising digital mental health support for Chinese adolescents.


This work collected data relating to not only efficacy of the digital intervention (the Coping Camp), but also data relating to the feasibility and acceptability, enabling us as authors to tell a whole story of the trial. We also did a post intervention user experience study, asking participants what features of the app was engaging and useful for them, see here for more details: Zhou X, Bambling M, Bai X, Smith AC and Edirippulige S (2023) Exploring factors affecting Chinese adolescents’ perceived usefulness and engagement with a stress management app: a qualitative study. Front. Psychol. 14:1249093. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2023.1249093

Xiaoyun Zhou

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: The feasibility, acceptability and efficacy of an app-based intervention (the Coping Camp) in reducing stress among Chinese school adolescents: A cluster randomised controlled trial, PLoS ONE, November 2023, PLOS,
DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0294119.
You can read the full text:

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