Saturday, 28 April 2012

Tutorial Eight: Assistive Technology

  • Provide a definition Assistive Technology (APA reference required).
  • Interpret this definition in your own words.  What might this definition cover.

Assistive Technology is defined as :
Any item, piece of equipment or product system whether acquired commercially off the shelf, modified, or customised that is used to increase or improve functional capabilities of individuals with disabilities.

Cook, A.M., & Hussey, S.M. (2002). Assistive technologies: principles and practise. St Louis: Mosby

My interpretation of this statement is that assistive technology is  a collection of ‘clever’ gadgets that can be used to provide a better quality of life for disabled people.  They can range from very inexpensive and simple to extremely expensive and elaborate.

This definition covers a very wide range of devices for rehabilitation or education of disabled individuals, from low (pencils and paper) to high technology (computers) which may achieve the same outcome.  There are also hard (readymade) and soft technologies (human knowledge) to facilitate successful device creation and use.   Cook & Hussey (2002).

Describe one piece of equipment introduced in the assistive technology tutorial. 

The assistive technology device I have chosen is called: ‘Keys U See’.
  • Provide information on size, cost and functions.

This keyboard has dimensions of 470mm x190mm x 38mm which is very similar to a conventional keyboard and costs $135.00 GST incl.

  • How the equipment increased occupational engagement for the user?  Provide examples here from the tutorial and lecture.

The functions are very LARGE BOLD lettering on the keys, internet keys for one touch internet and email and media keys for one touch music and video control.  These features will increase occupational engagement for the user with typical age related eyesight issues and allow participation for a longer period of time, particularly when combined with a larger computer screen.

  • Provide examples of the equipment’s use from online sources (minimum or 2 examples).  This can be done by hyper linking to blogs, internet sites, You Tube videos, podcasts etc.  How does this relate to occupation concepts introduced in tutorial one e.g. occupational justice, occupational disruption, occupational transition, or occupational deprivation? 

You tube clips:

This piece of assistive equipment will aid in overcoming occupational deprivation in the older generation through visual impairments caused by Macular Degeneratrion, Glaucoma, Diabetic Retinopathy, Cataracts and Age. 

The other use for the large print keyboard is in schools and the second clip shows it being marketed for kids as a bright colourful as well as easy to read screen that may assist in reducing the stigma of poor eyesight for a child by making it so bright and fun. This could be a form of occupational injustice, if the facility does not allow for the student to be engaged when there is a solution.

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Tutorial Seven: Linking blogs of interest and exchanging comments

I have successfully made a Blog feed for my 5 chosen blogs and have posted a comment on a chosen interesting blog and received a communication back in return.

  from: Tutorial Five: Video Production Sessions

Tutorial Six: The internet and Online communities

Provide the web addresses and a hyper links for the three online communities you have chosen

Provide a brief description of each community

  • What do you think is the intended purpose of the site?  Information can be linked here from the specific sites.
  • How interactive is this site? 
  • How can people contribute?
  • What do they contribute?

Age concern is a site specifically for serving the needs of older people by offering nationally contracted services, education, resources and national leadership.
Age Concern New Zealand serves to support, engage and promote the organisation’s development and quality best practice.  They advocate on policy and issues relevant to older people and ageing.  This site is interactive, as you can link into many areas on the Home Page and navigate to areas of interest.  People can contribute by their time, donations and grants to continue the work serving the needs of older people.  This is a not for profit, volunteer-based, registered charity organisation.  Individuals can contribute their expertise, time or money if they so desire.

 SeniorNet is a  nonprofit organisation dedicated to providing individuals 50 and over with access to computer technologies and the education necessary to use them.
Their mission is to connect older adults with these technologies to enhance their lives and enable them to share their knowledge and wisdom.  The site is interactive, has a blog and links to other areas of interest for seniors.  

Way 2 Age is an interactive online community focused on healthy, creative aging. Their mission is to provide a venue for exploring the rewards and challenges of the aging process.  This site is interactive as it is possible to navigate and find information linked to the site.  Individuals can contribute or not as they wish, play games and read blogs by other members.

Consider material presented in the online package.  

  • Make comment on why people choose to contribute to each community. 
Individuals may contribute to age concern to gain contacts and meaningful occupation in their day if they donate their time to be a volunteer visitor.  Having access to advocacy can be a comfort if feeling insecure and lonely.

Seniornet users may wish to interact with other users, find information and generally get help with learning about computer classes available. They learn to touch up photos and send and receive them in email, to desktop publish documents, write their autobiographies, manage personal and financial records, communicate with others across the country and the world and serve their communities.

Way 2 Age gets members to share stories, information, jokes, hobbies, wisdom, research, poems, pictures and videos in order to interact with like minded people around the world.  They choose to contribute if they are interested in a particular area.

  • What is it they are seeking?
Individuals accessing age concern may be seeking information, education or companionship through contact with like minded individuals in their age group.

Seniornet users are searching for ways to communicate and learn how online resources can assist and extend their lives.  To have contact with the world and not be isolated.

Way 2 Age community members are looking to extend their horizons and enlarge their experiences at a time of life when they may feel lonely and isolated.

  • Is information shared one way or reciprocal?
Age concern will respond to requests for information by individuals via a choice of email, mail or telephone.

Seniornet is providing information to members learn and teach others to use computers and communications technologies to accomplish a variety of tasks.

Way 2 Age is providing shared information through blog sites and postings from members that belong to this community

  • How do you think chosen sites address or relate to occupation concepts introduced in tutorial one e.g. occupational justice, occupational disruption, occupational transition, or occupational deprivation.  Choose at least 2 concepts to discuss

The chosen site of Age concern and Way 2 age address the occupation concepts of occupational transition that occurs in the elderly population, they may have been previously involved in busy working lives and upon retirement are looking for something to keep their minds active and occupy their day.  These sites may assist with this.

Seniornet can address the  concept of occupational deprivation through education and teaching the skills of computer use to this group in society.  The only situation of occupational deprivation not addressed would be the cost of an initial set up for an individual, but they do provide connections to get the technology at better prices due to connections with wholesalers.
Considering material presented during the course and comment on the potential ethical issues that may arise in this community e.g. lack of identity and accountability.

As there is always the potential for incorrect or potentially evasive information to be posted to online sites and blogs, individuals must be aware that not all information should be taken at face value and acted upon.  There is very little accountability and no real standards of practice to abide by.  Most sites will remove offensive material, but incorrect information may not be scrutinized.  The elderly could me more susceptible to online scams due to online inexperience.

Consider material presented in the online package and comment on the benefits and limitations these communities provide relate to traditional geographical communities.

Benefits provided by these communities is that providing the individual has the potential to use a computer and connect to the online community it is always accessible 24 hours of the day, and as many elderly have difficulty sleeping this could occupy some time at night when the limitations of traditional communities bound by daylight hours  are not accessible. 

Limitations of these online communities are that while providing occupational opportunities, they do not provide actual human contact and companionship.  This is a basic human need satisfied in a traditional community setting.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Tutorial Five: Video Production Sessions

Music is part of human nature and all the residents seem to enjoy the music that is used when exercising group is in session, there is music in the chapel sessions and own choice music in the residents rooms.  At special times of the year, e.g. Christmas carols were sung by local choirs which brings in a feeling of belonging to the wider world and brings the community feeling into the Rest home.  Music is universal and part of the occupation of leisure.

On other occasions within this setting while the ladies were having foot spas we also gave them a manicure and painted their fingernails, this provides an image of self respect and personal pride in their appearance which assists in belonging to the group of women within the residence and linked into self cares and leisure time.

As each resident required to have their feet dried off from the spa bath, I performed a light massage
on the foot using the scented lotion, they felt as though they belonged to an exclusive pamper group.  Feeling good about yourself is linked to the occupation of self cares and leisure.

While the residents were enjoying their sensory foot soaking I asked if they would like to have their hands massaged and they all were interested. I proceeded to use hand moisturizer to gently massage the pleasant smelling cream into each hand before moving on to the next client.  This is an interest in self cares.

Within my Placement in a retirement village there were daily activities in the Recreation room. On a particular day the activity enjoyed by most individuals was Bingo but one small group of individuals were occupationally deprived from this due to an  impairment of blindness. In order to occupy the group on this occasion I decided to set up a corner of the room for a small sensory session. This involved setting up foot spa baths for the individuals with lovely warm water and foot spa salts. The clients were seated in easy chairs and no longer felt excluded from the activities as they were participating in the gathering, could hear what the group were up to while enjoying the pampering session.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Tutorial Four: Video Production Sessions

We were set a task of creating a video about one of four concepts: being Occupational Justice, Occupational Disruption, Occupational Transition or Occupational Deprivation.   Aldrin, Alisha, Jenny and I chose the subject of  Occupational Disruption and set about describing our plan using a storyboard and scripting or planning our video with minimal propsEquipment was booked via email from the OT Office and the brief was the entire video had to be no longer than one minute.
The video portrays a student who has an accident on the stairs and falls requiring assistance to a first aid facility.
The outcome shows our student in a wheelchair struggling to access the upstairs classes.  This sequence of events portrays Occupational disruption as defined by Christiansen and Townsend (2010).

"A Transient or temporary condition of being restricted from participation in necessary or meaningful occupations, such as that caused by illness, temporary relocation, or temporary unemployment".

Christiansen, C. H., & Townsend, E. A. (2010). Introduction to occupation: the art and science of living (2nd ed.). New Jersey, USA: Pearson Education Inc

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Tutorial Three - Blog creation tasks

Tutorial Two - Occupational Engagement, Doing Being, Becoming and Belonging

P.I.O. Powerpoint 
Title: Occupations in the Rest Home

The occupations undertaken in the recreation room of a rest home was chosen as this was my placement in Fieldwork 2.  For 13 weeks I attended once a week for the morning helping facilitate the program while participating in and observing the community involved. The residents were informed via a notice board outside the dining room of the days program and were able to choose if they were interested in participating or not.
The session always began with some exercise to music, and then morning tea was enjoyed by all before the session started.


Doing – Hammell (1998) states “The concept of doing includes purposeful, goal-oriented activities; doing has been the traditional preoccupation of occupational therapy” (p.301).

Being – “Being has been defined as time taken to reflect, be introspective or meditative, (re)discover the self, savour the moment... and to enjoy being with special people” (Hammell, 1998, p.301).

Become – “Becoming describes the idea that people can envision future selves and possible lives, explore new opportunities and harbour ideas their lives might be experienced as worthwhile” (Hammell, 1998, p.302).

Belong – “Belonging, within a network of social support can underpin both the ability to do and contribute to the pleasure and meaningfulness of doing” (Hammell, 2004, p.302)

Hammell, K. W. (2004). Dimensions of meaning in the occupations of daily life. Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy, 71(5), 296-305.

Explanation of images chosen:

Figures 1-5 and 9 show images of knitting performed as group work.
Figures 6-7 show images of morning tea as a daily occupation
Figure 8 shows the communal area that all residents can be occupied in.
Figures 10-16 portray some examples of the occupations chosen.
Figures 17- 18 portray group activities of exercise and participation.
Figures 19-20 depict creative choices and challenges. 

In order to ensure that my work remained ethical, I chose images that were freely available from online sources of the internet; the images taken by myself were of completed projects without residents of the facility featured and I chose inoffensive creative images to portray occupation.

View more PowerPoint from Otago Polytechnic