Book Image

Getting Started with ResearchKit

By : Dhanush Balachandran, Edward Cessna
Book Image

Getting Started with ResearchKit

By: Dhanush Balachandran, Edward Cessna

Overview of this book

ResearchKit is an open source software development framework from Apple that lets you easily create mobile applications for clinical research studies. ResearchKit provides you the ability to orchestrate the administration of tasks and recording of the results. ResearchKit provides tasks in order to perform informed consent, active tasks, and surveys. Starting with the basics of the ResearchKit framework, this books walks you through the steps of creating iOS applications that could serve as the basis of a clinical research mobile app. This book will introduce readers to ResearchKit and how to turn your iPhone into into a clinical research tool. The book will start off by installing and building the research framework in line with the researcher's needs; during this, the reader will learn to embed ResearchKit in the application and create a small task. After this, the book will go a little deeper into creating modules for surveys, consents, and so on. The book will also cover the various aspects of privacy and security with regard to participant data, and how to build dashboards for visualizing medical data and results in line with the researcher's requirements: data backends, JSON serialization and deserialization, and so on. Readers will be able to fully utilize ResearchKit for medical research, will be able to get more and more patients to participate in their surveys, and will gain insights from the surveys using the dashboards created.
Table of Contents (15 chapters)

Custom tasks


While navigable ordered tasks offer flexibility to skip steps, this may not be enough for more complex tasks. In such cases, ResearchKit allows you to build the custom tasks. Custom tasks can be built by creating objects that conform to the ORKTask protocol. These tasks provide the ultimate flexibility in dynamically choosing the next step based on the results from the previous steps. In the initial five ResearchKit apps that Apple announced, custom tasks were used to generate dynamic surveys based on the data received from the backend server and the answers provided by the users.

The ORKTask protocol has one non-optional property and two non-optional methods that need to be implemented in order to conform to this protocol. The ORKTaskViewController calls these methods on the custom task object to obtain relevant steps and dynamically present step view controllers to accomplish the step, as follows:

//1
public var identifier: String

//2
public func stepAfterStep(step: ORKStep...