The uncertain nature of ‘the future’.

To everyone who may have any interest in this blog still. You may have noticed it’s gone quiet. I’ll admit it has lost its original purpose, which was (once upon a time) to store my reflections while studying occupational therapy. I graduated three years ago (WOW), and since then, I’ve gone in a different direction.

I now work in IT for an online education company, and I don’t actually know where I’m headed from here. The older I get, the more I realise that I still don’t know exactly who I am and where I belong. Also, life doesn’t go as planned. At the age of 16, I thought I was going to become an OT. Then I graduated and had no clue what I was going to do, falling into first a customer service desk job at M&S, then a technical support call centre for a small software company. I didn’t intend to go into IT. I never thought for a second when I was younger that that’s where I’d end up.

I want to actually take this site down or make it private, as I’m not sure what to do with it now. However, I still get quite a lot of hits to it from Google searches; it seems my OT resources are quite popular, and I don’t want to deprive students of anything that could help them understand MOHO better.

So I’ll leave my site up for you students out there who like my diagrams and explanations, at least until I think of a better place to put them where you can find them. Who knows, maybe I’ll find a use for this blog down the line? Or maybe any followers I might still have from Ye Olden Times might have some ideas on how I can breathe life into this place again? Do you want to read about the life of an almost-24-year-old who is realising she has no idea what’s going on?

The next #OTalk (26/11/13) will be on my dissertation topic, video games in rehabilitation!

This is just a quick update to publicise the upcoming #OTalk, which will be on Games in Rehabilitation. As some of you may remember, I did my OT dissertation on virtual reality video games for rehabilitating children with cerebral palsy, so this is one of those talks I will come out of hiding to participate in.

The talk will be led by Rachel Proffitt (@Games4RehabOT), who has prepared this blog post to introduce the subject.

My dissertation was published back in March 2012, and at the time, my findings were summarised as such:

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a common childhood disability, with 1 in 400 babies born each year resulting in a diagnosis. Occupational therapists (OTs) aim to improve daily function while engaging children with CP in typical childhood occupations, such as play. Motion-sensing virtual reality (VR) interventions could allow children with CP to engage in realistic playful environments while practicing repetitive movements and developing functional motor skills. OTs need to embrace technology, but an evidence base is needed before new technology, like VR, can be used in interventions.

The evidence base for motion-sensing VR is emerging, with limited evidence to support the use of VR in practice. However, reviewed articles suggest that VR is possibly on par with current standard treatment for developing upper extremity motor skills. Stronger evidence is needed, but there is potential. No studies have used a VR system that tracks the movements of a handheld remote, only systems that track hands.

Not that you need to get this, but I have made my dissertation available to anyone who wants it at Lulu.com.

I look forward to seeing some of you in my Twitter feed on Tuesday at 8pm, UK time!

My first publication.

This week, I had a short piece of writing published for the first time. It is relatively public in that people I don’t know and didn’t go to school/university/work with will read it, but unfortunately, you can’t find it online. But if you’re a member of the British Association of Occupational Therapists and have received February’s issue of OTnews, you can flip through the news section and find a submission I wrote about Oxford Brookes University’s collaboration with Tokyo Metropolitan University in August 2012, hosting a group of Japanese postgraduate students and professors of occupational therapy, nursing and midwifery. At the bottom, you will find ‘Danielle Werner, Oxford Brookes University’, which definitely sent a thrill through me, though I’d like to publish something more substantial at some point. Anyway, it’s a quick read, so I hope those of you who can will read it and possibly think about how you can make connections with the wider world out there!

(PS – it should have said ‘Danielle Werner, BSc(Hons) Occupational Therapy’, don’t you think?)