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I am an Australian occupational therapist, educator and researcher. I have worked as an OT in mental health, vocational rehabilitation and a private surgical hospital. I am passionate using online technology to enhance the knowledge and growth of the occupational therapy profession. In my PhD research I am looking at the role of online technologies in information management and knowledge transfer in occupational therapy. Views expressed and stories shared on this blog are my opinion and do not represent views of my employer or professional registration body.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Am I slow? I've discovered today which is a social bookmarking tool. This tool enables people to bookmark websites in the same way you would on your own computer but it is stored on the web, meaning that it can be used when you away from your own computer and it can be shared with others. Yep, more networking!

How does it work?
Sign up to so that you can use this tool. After you join up you can bookmark your favourite sites. When you find a new website that you want to access again in the future tag it in with key words that describe it's content. Your tags can be shared with others who are looking for similar sites or topics. Here's an instructional video.

The best thing is, if you are involved in a group who are interested in the same topic area you can share the load by sharing your bookmarks!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

The important role of online communities: an area for OT development?

One key interest I have is the important role that online communities have in supporting people who are dying. This is a personal and professional interest as I helped my father to become involved in an online support group after being diagnosed with (o)esophageal cancer (EC Cafe).

The role he played in that group was amazing, he became counsellor to others who had the same illness and received suppoprt at the same time. Family members could also participate and through this group my father's life continued to have meaning despite growing frailty. When he died we read messages from his new friends in the virtual world to the people who were his friends in the "real" world.

I've added an article link to this Blog about the role of virtual communities in support and activism. It's entitled ‘‘To me, it’s my life’’: Medical communication, trust, and activism in cyberspace.

Web 2.0 in OT education and beyond

When I started using web 2.0 technology a few years back it was always within the univeristy setting and I felt a bit scared to "put myself out there" in the real cyber-world. I was too scared to find out what I didn't know, rather than celebrate what I was learning.

Merolee Penman at Otago Polytechnic in NZ was a person I connected with early in this phase and among other things Merolee has a great blog addressing the topic of Web 2.0 technology in OT education and beyond, here's the link. From Merolee's Blog there are some great links such as On the run, Re-Engineering Assessment Practices in Scottish Higher Education (REAP), Housing OT and the Salford Occupational Therapy Blog. Just to name a few.

I'm sensing that the use of technology in neurological rehab is far more advanced than in the areas of psychosocial rehabilitation. As usual, the more I dig the more I find there are amazing people out there doing incredible work. Just today I came across the work of Albert "Skip" Rizzo in the area of virtual technology and neurological and behavioural rehabilitation.

The use of virtual technology in psychosocial rehabilitation would be a good area for OT to branch into, it is just emerging in the area of Second Life. A colleague at the UofA is very interested in this area through his PhD research, so I'm hoping he'll visit this Blog and give us more information on this ;-)

Adaptive Use Musical Instruments Media

Thanks Bonita for the link to the site looking at Adaptive Use Musical Instruments Media. This technology allows people with quite limited phyical movement to play piano or drums through a computer. Here's the link to the article and here's a link to the YouTube demo video.

My slideshare uploads