Thelma Cardwell Research Day 2017


Wednesday, June 28

Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE)
Auditorium (Room G162)
252 Bloor St. West
Toronto, ON


Keynote Speaker

Dr. Lisa Richardson

Good Medicine: Lessons from Indigenous Health Education

Lisa Richardson is a clinician-educator in the University of Toronto’s Division of General Internal Medicine, and practices at the University Health Network. Her academic interest lies in the integration of postcolonial, indigenous and feminist perspectives into medical education. She is Faculty co-Lead in Indigenous Medical Education for the University of Toronto’s medical school and is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Medicine where she leads the new portfolio called Person-Centered Care Education. She currently holds the Wilson Centre’s Indigenous Health Education Investigator award, and is a previous AMS Phoenix fellow for her work related to teaching equity and cultural safety.


8:30 Registration
9:00 Opening Remarks and Welcome
9:10 Tribute to Thelma Cardwell
9:30 Dr. Lisa Richardson Keynote Address
“Good Medicine: Lessons from Indigenous Health Education”
10:30 BREAK
10:45 Student Presentations
12:15 LUNCH
1:15 Student Presentations
2:45 BREAK
3:00 Awards Presentations
3:15 Closing Remarks


Student Research Presentations

A Randomized Trial Examining the Effectiveness of Digital Picture Frame Use on the Long Term Inpatient Experience
Diane Brownlee and Lori Caplan
This study will be a randomized trial that investigates the effectiveness of digital picture frames (DPF) installed in inpatient rooms on long stay inpatient wards servicing schizophrenia clients at CAMH. The effects on client experience will consider the domains of self-concept, interactions with healthcare staff, perception of space and implications for the recovery process. The comparison of inpatient client experience with DPFs versus a control group (Treatment as Usual – TAU), offers the opportunity to examine the effectiveness of this type of environmental adaptation. This trial builds upon earlier work that demonstrated the feasibility of DPFs in this context (Kidd et al., 2015)
Supervisor(s): John Spavor, Sean Kidd

Adaptive Clothing for Persons Living with Hemiparesis
Ashley Whetham and Carolyne Seward
This project aims to learn about the clothing needs of women living with hemiparesis through the use of semi-structured interviews. In the next phases of the project, this information will be used to inform the design of an adaptive brassiere, shirt, and outdoor jacket that meets the unique needs of this population.
Supervisor(s): Debbie Hebert, Rosalie Wang

Addressing Clients’ Sexual Health in Occupational Therapy Practice
Abrielle Dodington and Catherine Smith
Occupational Therapists regard sexual health as a relevant domain of practice; however, previous research demonstrates that client sexuality is not adequately addressed in healthcare. This study uses an online questionnaire, distributed to occupational Therapists registered with the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists and/or their provincial association. The aim of the study is to understand beliefs, knowledge, comfort, and practices of Canadian occupational Therapists in various practice settings in regards to addressing clients’ sexual health.
Supervisor(s): Kelli Young, Carol Heck

An Observational Descriptive Study of Dressing in Women with Hemiparesis Post-Stroke
Jessica Coleman and Hannah Jantzi
This study aims to understand the person and clothing factors that affect donning and doffing of outerwear, innerwear, and brassieres for women with hemiparesis post-stroke. Qualitative and quantitative data will be collected and analyzed from video recordings of women demonstrating upper body dressing.
Supervisor(s): Rosalie Wang, Debbie Hebert, Milan Shahani

Aspirations and Expectations of Youth with Physical Disabilities Transitioning to Work
Cara Uy and Winnie Lieu
This study aims to describe the aspirations and expectations that youth with physical disabilities have regarding accessing and obtaining employment through a thematic analysis of a peer e-mentoring program’s discussion forums. The information extracted will potentially allow for better understanding of these youth’s experiences with employment and help guide improvements to employment programs and clinical practice.
Supervisor(s): Sally Lindsay

Care Conferences in Neuro-Rehabilitation: Are They Meeting Expectations?
Alison Schwartz and Jennifer Diamond
Care Conferences have been used with Acquired Brain Injury (ABI) populations as a platform to provide education and to discuss patient progress and discharge planning. We plan to explore the effectiveness of Care Conferences from the perspectives of patients and caregivers who participate in ABI Care Conferences. The findings will be used to inform occupational therapists and other healthcare professionals with suggestions to improve the effectiveness of Care Conferences.
Supervisor(s): Edith Ng, Debbie Hebert

Caring for Alzheimer’s: Identifying Caregiver Support Needs Throughout the Disease
Samantha D’Souza and Jennifer Au
Our research will inform a caregiver needs framework to address Alzheimer’s caregivers’ changing support needs across the illness trajectory. Findings will inform future research and guide healthcare professionals to deliver timely and appropriate provision of support to family caregivers to individuals with Alzheimer’s disease across the disease trajectory.
Supervisor(s): Jill Cameron, Nira Rittenberg

Concussion in Minor Hockey: Evaluating An Educational Intervention
Natan Adelman and David Mathers
We are comparing results from a pre and post survey done on all the coaches and trainers in the GTHL. This survey was be administered both before and after an education session on concussions and will be exploring the effect of the education on their knowledge, attitudes, and intended practices towards concussions.
Supervisor(s): Katherine Wilson, Nick Reed, Andie Hickling

Creating the Daly Activity Log for Youth with Concussion (DALY-C): Part Two of a Tool Development Study
Adriana Carranza and Sophie Hopkins
The objective of this study is to help develop a validated activity tracking and symptom management tool that can be used by youth post-concussion to help monitor their activity levels and return to activity, gradually and safely. Eight to ten youth will participate in this study by completing the activity log and participating in a cognitive interview with one researcher. The activity log will then be modified based on participant responses.
Supervisor(s): Nick Reed, Dayna Greenspoon

Development and Evaluation of a Crowd-Sourcing App to Determine the Age-Friendliness of Public Spaces
Eryn Weldon and Jacob C.K. Leung
The rise of smartphone use among the growing population of older adults (OA) can facilitate the promotion of age-friendly communities (AFC). Hence, the creation of Age-CAP: a mobile application where OAs can provide input about AFCs. Using focus groups and user feedback, a new app will be designed and evaluated.
Supervisor(s): Alex Mihailidis, Barry Trentham

Does Photography Enhance Communication and Social Participation for Aphasia?
Tara Bassett and Marina Cremonese
The aim of this study is to determine if a twelve-week photography group can increase the social participation and communication skills of individuals with aphasia. We will videotape individuals with aphasia participating in group conversations, and they will be scored using an observational measure the examining the frequency of verbal and nonverbal participation in communication. Participants and their significant others will also complete questionnaires exploring social participation and communication effectiveness.
Supervisor(s): Emily Nalder, Ruth Patterson

Evaluating Grip Strength in Response to Auditory Stimulus: Exploring a Dual-Task Paradigm for Concussed Youth and their Non-Concussed Peers
Stephanie Raheb and Kelsey Gamble
We will be evaluating grip strength in response to auditory stimulus in youth who have sustained a concussion and their non-concussed peers. Investigation of a grip strength and reaction time dual-task protocol is needed to identify its use as a cost effective and sensitive measure in concussion management protocols.
Supervisor(s): Nick Reed, Karolina Urban

Examining Innovative Technology Use in Classrooms to Support Inclusive Education
Megan Yang and Danielle Brown
With the rapid proliferation of technology in the form of new devices, software, and apps, there are ever-increasing possibilities for integrating technologies into the classroom to support the occupational performance and engagement of students. The aim of this mixed-methods study is to better understand the innovative ways that parents, students and school personnel are using technology to support inclusive education. Online surveys and focus groups will provide insight into how innovative technology improves education for students with varying abilities.
Supervisor(s): Vera Roberts, Julia Foster

Examining the Impact of Yoga At Enhancing Participation in Meaningful Occupations Following Cancer
Patricia Blinn and Naomi Hazlett
This study seeks to investigate the effects of a 12-week yoga intervention on occupational performance in cancer survivors. Using a pre-post design, the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure (COPM) will be used to measure each participant’s occupational performance, and the Functional Assessment of Cancer Therapy- General (FACT-G) will be used to track well-being. It is hypothesized that participation in yoga will increase occupational performance in cancer survivors, and that this will be associated with an increase in well-being.
Supervisor(s): Jill Cameron, Daniel Santa Mina

Examining the Stakeholders’ Technology-Related Needs for Inclusive Education
Naisargee Patel and Cong Hui Guo
Occupational Therapists (OTs) often play an important role in the selection, implementation and training of technology for inclusive education for students, parents, and educators (stakeholders). Understanding of stakeholder needs will allow OTs to develop resources and provide services to better support students, parents, and educators in fulfilling their respective roles.
Supervisor(s): Julia Foster, Vera Robert

‘Ex-PLISSIT Enablement’ of Sexuality and Sexual Expression in Occupational Therapy – Perspectives on a Hybrid Practice Model
Michelle Towell and Nicole Kerbrat
Occupational Therapists report that client sexuality and sexual expression is rarely addressed in practice. The Ex-PLISSIT Enablement model aims to orient practitioners to profession specific principles, approaches and points for reflection on practice. This online anonymous survey gives the first insights into occupational Therapists’ perceived level of comfort and competence in enabling client sexuality and sexual expression, and their opinions on this new practice model.
Supervisor(s): Kevin Reel, Sylvia Davidson

Exploring the AccessTO Volunteer Experiences of the Collaborative Training and Audit Processes
Sezgi Ozel and Nisha Goel
AccessTO is a blog-based website that highlights barrier-free venues using audits completed by volunteer occupational therapists/students and individuals with lived experience of disability. Part of a larger program evaluation, this study explores experiences of the collaborative training and audit processes. Examining partner experiences can inform AccessTO’s development efforts and provide insight into advocacy partnerships.
Supervisor(s): Barry Trentham, Jill Stier

Exploring Barriers and Enablers to Knowledge Translation of a Pediatric Training Course Into Iranian Practice Using the Theoretical Domains Framework
Ensieh Rafiei and Rana Solianik
This qualitative study explores both barriers and enablers to knowledge translation (KT) of content from an educational course on family and client-centered care among Iranian allied health professionals at a rehabilitation facility in Tehran.
Supervisor(s): Debra Cameron, Heather Colquhoun

Exploring Concussion Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices in Minor Hockey Coaches and Trainers
Vanessa Gaglia and Alexandra Cogliano
This study will describe the current concussion knowledge, attitudes, and practices of minor hockey coaches and trainers. This study also seeks to determine how demographic variables, as well as knowledge and attitudes may affect the practices of coaches and trainers and to determine predictors of more favourable practices.
Supervisor(s): Nick Reed, Andrea Hickling, Katherine Wilson

Exploring How Occupational Therapists’ Lived Experience Shapes the Therapeutic Alliance
Leah Allerdings and Anita Mohan
This study explores how occupational Therapists lived experience of mental illness shapes the Therapeutic alliance in practice. Multiple life history narrative interviews focusing on mental illness recovery and career trajectory will be undertaken with three mental health occupational Therapy practitioners, resulting in co-constructed narratives. From these narratives, cross-cutting themes will be generated that illustrate how lived experience shapes practitioners’ work with their clients.
Supervisor(s): Jane Davis, Barry Trentham

Exploring Technologies for Virtual Reality Therapy of Young People with Cerebral Palsy
William Farr and Joshua Green
This project will evaluate a number of virtual and mixed reality Therapy games in a group of children with cerebral palsy. Children will have a chance to try a number of games using the Xbox Kinect 2 technology and Therapeutic effectiveness and player satisfaction will be evaluated.
Supervisor(s): Elaine Biddiss, Virginia Wright

Exploring the Occupational Identities and Participation of Young Stroke Survivors
Zoë McRury Smith and Jessica Gosselin
Young stroke survivors often struggle with poorly age-adapted rehabilitation. Through narrative interviews and thematic analysis, this study examines if the occupational identities of this population change post-stroke, and if any changes that occur influence participation post-stroke. Information collected has the potential to inform best practice and positively impact age-adapted rehabilitation.
Supervisor(s): Emily Nalder, Rhona Anderson

Financial Management After Acquired Brain Injury: Clinicians’ Perspectives
Holly Pearson and Elizabeth Cambridge
Adults living with acquired brain injury (ABI) often struggle with managing their finances due to cognitive impairment, which may lead to a loss of autonomy in one’s daily activities. Currently, there is no agreed upon conceptualization of financial management after ABI; therefore, the guidelines for clinical practice to determine FM independence is lacking. This project aims to understanding financial management from the perspective of clinicians who work with this population. Their perspectives can elucidate the challenges this population has with financial management skills and can highlight the state of current practice.
Supervisor(s): Deirdre Dawson, Lisa Engel

Friendships and Quality of Life in Youth with Disabilities
Chantal D’souza and Kyla Robert
We are using the Voices of Youth Project (VOYP) data to conduct a secondary analysis on what friendships add to the lives of youth with disabilities (ages 18-24).
Supervisor(s): Rebecca Renwick

How to Support Family Caregivers in the Context of Medical Assistance in Dying
Carly Daubert and Aisha Farnum
This study aims to explore the attitudes and perspectives of family caregivers who care for individuals with irremediable medical conditions on assisted dying. This study will explore the personal meaning of, and feelings toward the current legislation on assisted dying in Ontario.
Supervisor(s): Jill Cameron, Kevin Reel

Impact of Arts-Based Training on the Caregiving Relationship in Dementia
Kaare Naelapea and Katie Buckley
To equip caregivers with the skills they need to engage their care recipients with dementia in arts-based activities, an arts-based skills training program was created to support the caregiving dyad. Themes from initial and follow-up interviews with caregiver participants may determine the impact of the program on the caregiving relationship.
Supervisor(s): Mary Chiu, Jennifer Carr, Virginia Wesson

Lived Experiences of Occupational Therapists in Transitioning to Leadership Roles
Sasha Shams and Ravneet Batth
The purpose of this project is to examine the challenges, supports and resources found to be beneficial by occupational Therapists as they transitioned into a clinical leadership role. This study will utilize a qualitative study design using semi-structured interviews with open ended questions. Participants must currently hold a leadership title, such as manager, clinical lead or professional practice leaders (PPL).
Supervisor(s): Andrea Duncan

Mental Health and Assistive Technology
Fiza Nadeem and Diane Park
This is a scoping review that looks at evidence in literature regarding use of assistive technology to help people with mental health concerns.
Supervisor(s): Rosalie Wang

Motivational Interviewing in Vocational Rehabilitation for Persons with Disabilities
Christine Elizabeth Friesen and Yunbei Long
Persons with disabilities seek vocational rehabilitation services that incorporate motivational interviewing to acquire employment. This mixed methods study will explore how the stages of change affect employment outcomes and how motivational interviewing strategies tailored towards the stages of change influence the vocational rehabilitation process for persons with disabilities.
Supervisor(s): Emily Nalder

Negotiating Identities: Exploring Disability from the Perspective of Young Adults with Intellectual/Developmental Disabilities
Jasmine Cowen
Drawing from research on multifaceted and fluid notions of identity, this qualitative, descriptive study aims to clarify the subjective, negotiated, and intersectional identities of young adults with IDD. Using innovative analysis techniques where codes are applied directly to video-recorded data, this study draws from the constructivist grounded theory approach to develop themes pertaining to the identity perspectives of young adults with IDD.
Supervisor(s): Rebecca Renwick

Occupational Performance Issues in a Modified Constraint-Induced Movement Therapy Program
Kylie Mallory and Kathryn Barton
Modified constraint-induced movement Therapy programs lead to functional gains for children with hemiplegia secondary to acquired brain injury, yet the occupational performance issues effectively addressed are largely unknown. This study investigates one such program, exploring the types of occupational performance issues set, and which of these relate to meaningful improvements.
Supervisor(s): Nick Reed, Janet Woodhouse, Janet Bernstein, Dayna Greenspoon

Occupational Repertoire Development Measure – Child (ORDM-C): A Usability Study
Holly Thomas and Sana Momin
The ORDM-C is a tool, under development, designed to capture the specific occupational repertoire of a child and to explore the reasons (e.g., interest/opportunity) that have shaped his or her repertoire. This study is to determine the clinical utility and usability of the ORDM-C from the perspective of the children completing the measure and the administrators of the measure.
Supervisor(s): Jane Davis, Janet Njelesani, Tatiana Pontes, Helene J. Polatajko

Occupational Therapists’ Experiences of Working with Older Spousal Dementia Caregivers
Alexandra Tabora-Paz and Ella Haley
The purpose of this research study is to gain a deeper understanding of occupational therapists’ experiences in working with older spousal caregivers of individuals with dementia who have a cognitive and/or functional decline. This study has the potential to identify whether more effective and/or specialized interventions should be designed that aim to improve the health, well-being and quality of life for both the caregiver and care-recipient.
Supervisor(s): Deirdre Dawson, Ifah Arbe, Jill Cameron

Occupational Therapy Perspectives on Medical Assistance in Dying: Qualitative Study
Betty Tran and Serena Lu
Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD) has been decriminalized in Canada. This study presents a qualitative investigation to the perspectives of OTs and Student OTs on MAiD, and potential OT roles. Results of the study indicate that many OTs consider MAiD to be within their scope and competence to be involved.
Supervisor(s): Kevin Reel

Occupational Therapy’s Role with Adolescent Eating Disorders: A Scoping Review
Caroline Carncross and Kelsea Liotta
A scoping review was conducted to explore the role of occupational Therapists working with adolescents with eating disorders. The results of this study will support the identification of knowledge and practice gaps that need to be addressed in order to develop innovative approaches within the occupational Therapist’s role in the assessment, treatment, and recovery of adolescents with eating disorders.
Supervisor(s): Rama Arora-Persaud, Cheryl Fiske


Recovery-Oriented Experience and Engagement At the Partial Hospitalization Program for Adults Living with Psychosis
Sarah Ohana and Nicole Ranieri
We will explore recovery experiences from the perspectives of individuals living with psychosis, who are currently enrolled in the Partial Hospitalization Program. One hour semi-structured interviews and/or focus groups will be employed to capture the participants’ perspectives to explore how the Partial Hospitalization Program may foster recovery.
Supervisor(s): Avelino (Jun) Maranan, Kaitlyn Lee

Reliability and Validity of the Youth Evaluation of Products Scale for Augmentative and Alternative Communication Devices
Christina Swett and Christopher Welton
Through this project, we are attempting to determine the psychometric properties of the Youth Evaluation of Products scale when it is applied to Alternative and Augmentative COmmunication devices. In particular, we are investigating internal consistency and construct validity
Supervisor(s): Stephen Ryan

Retrospective Chart Review of Current Practice Regarding Bathroom Safety Recommendations
Janice Chan and Kathryn Benoit
To enable safety and independence at home, occupational Therapists use their expertise to recommend bathroom safety equipment, yet, current practice recommendations are unknown in homecare. This study fills this gap by investigating what recommendations are made and if they are followed by clients. The aim is to understand current occupational Therapy practice in bathroom equipment prescription and to explore clients’ actions in response to recommendations.
Supervisor(s): Alison Novak, Sandra McKay, Emily King

Scoping Review: Storytelling Approaches in Mental Health Recovery
Mhairi Kay and Natalie Levine
The aim of this scoping review is to identify, summarize, and disseminate perspectives on how storytelling is understood and applied within mental health recovery and occupational Therapy practice. Results will provide an understanding of the proposed mechanisms by which storytelling inspires change and identify gaps to address in future research.
Supervisor(s): Bonnie Kirsh, Heather Colquhoun

Services and Supports That Facilitate Employment for Previously Homeless Adults Living with Mental Illness 
Yarima Gonzalez-Kucinska and Erin Aucoin
There is limited research on how supported employment programs facilitate employment for individuals with mental illness and a history of homelessness. This qualitative study will use grounded theory analysis to assess the perspectives of service providers and consumers and identify what elements of supported employment programs produce vocational outcomes.
Supervisor(s): Bonnie Kirsh

Project Coordinator: Tania Barrie

Staff and Patient Perspectives on Falls Risk in an Inpatient Geriatric and Medical Rehabilitation Program
Samantha Annecchiarico and Vithurry Sivaloganathan
We will be looking at the patient and staff perspectives on falls risk through the use of a survey. This is a descriptive quantitative study where we will be looking at similarities and differences in perspectives on falls risk to help improve the falls prevention program at Providence Healthcare.
Supervisor(s): Jessica Casey, Rachel Devitt

The Dementia Sibling Study: Brothers and Sisters Sharing Caregiving Responsibilities
Lily Nguyen and Genalyn Elane
Adult child caregivers often assume the primary caregiving role for parents with dementia; however, little is known about the impact of gender on how brother-sister pairs divide caregiving tasks. This project explores how sons and daughters negotiate caregiving responsibilities in the context of caring for a parent with dementia.
Supervisor(s): Jill Cameron, Nira Rittenberg

The Impact of Weekend Occupational Therapy Services in An Acute Care General Medicine Population
Emma Beaulieu
Occupational Therapy services are typically offered only on weekdays in acute care settings. This project uses retrospective chart review methodology to analyze the impact of adding weekend OT services to acute care general medicine units at a large Ontario hospital. Length of stay, discharge destination, and functional outcomes were evaluated for patients admitted on weekends before and after the implementation of this weekend OT service program.
Supervisor(s): Amanda Mowbray

The Umbrella of Protection: Implementation of the Structured Assessment of Protective Factors for Violence Risk (SAPROF) in Forensic Rehabilitation
Brittney Williams and Bandhana Maheru
The Structured Assessment of Protective Factors for Violence Risk (SAPROF) is an assessment tool that analyzes protective factors when assessing for violence risk. Using a qualitative design, semi structured interviews will be carried out on inter-professional staff with experience using the assessment. The aim of this study is to explore the perceptions of staff in implementing the assessment on the unit and the value of the assessment in clinical practice.
Supervisor(s): Tom Domjancic

Use of the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure As a Patient-Reported Outcome Measure Across the Continuum of Stroke Care
Andrea Stokes and Maria Jing Ma
This study explores the use of the COPM throughout a stroke care continuum in a multi-organizational integrated funding model. Through thematic analysis of semi-structured interviews with patients, families and clinicians, this study aims to explore the use of the COPM in supporting client-centred practice, goal setting, and care planning.
Supervisor(s): Beth Linkewich, Siobhan Donaghy