App evaluation models

The following are examples of published app assessment tools which provide a framework to inform decision making about apps.

Resource   Description
Mobile App Rating Scale (MARS) developed by the Queensland University of Technology (2015)3
  • Designed to score apps on a few comprehensive dimensions such as engagement, functionality, aesthetics and information quality.
  • Read more about MARS
RCP Health Informatics Unit checklist (2016)4
National Library of Medicine (NLM) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) (2016)
App Chronic Disease Checklist (2016)5
American Psychiatric Association (APA) app evaluation model (2020)
Boudreaux ED, et al (2014)6
  • Published an article that outlines 7 strategies for evaluating and selecting health-related apps. Read more 
Graded review of dermatology apps (2018)7 
  • Evaluated dermatology apps for patient education and identified 5 key criteria. Read more
mHealth App Trustworthiness checklist (2019)8
  • Identified 23 items groups into 6 categories for evaluating health apps. Read more


  1. Selecting a mobile app: evaluating the usability of medical applications mHiMSS, 2012
  2. Stoyanov SR, Hides L, Kavanagh DJ, Zelenko O, et al. Mobile app rating scale: a new tool for assessing the quality of health mobile apps JMIR Mhealth Uhealth. 2015 Mar 11;3(1):e27.
  3. Jeremy C Wyatt, Harold Thimbleby, et al. What makes a good clinical app? Introducing the RCP Health Informatics Unit checklist Clin Med (Lond). 2015
  4. Anderson K, Burford O, Emmerton L. App chronic disease checklist: Protocol to evaluate mobile apps for chronic disease self-management. JMIR Res Protoc. 2016 
  5. Boudreaux ED, Waring ME, Hayes RB, Sadasivam RS, et al. Evaluating and selecting mobile health apps: strategies for healthcare providers and healthcare organizations Transl Behav Med. 2014 Dec;4(4):363-71.
  6. Masud A, Shafi S, Rao BK. Mobile medical apps for patient education: a graded review of available dermatology apps. Cutis. 2018 Feb;101(2):141-144. 
  7. van Haasteren A, Gille F, Fadda M, Vayena E. Development of the mHealth app trustworthiness checklist. Digit Health. 2019
  8. Singh K, Drouin K, Newmark LP, et al. Developing a framework for evaluating the patient engagement, quality, and safety of mobile health applications The Commonwealth Fund, February 2016. 
  9. Prescribing apps: helping patients to select a health app Nursing Review. 2018;18(1).

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