Category Archives: In General

Spring 2012 Rehabilitation Science Online Programs Graduates

Please join us in congratulating this Spring’s graduates.

Receiving their Master of Rehabilitation Science degree:

  • Sabrina Li
  • Rebecca Shook
  • Sarah Strickey

Read their research abstracts and those from previous graduation classes on the program website.

Receiving their Graduate Certificate in Rehabilitation:

  • Lisa Aquilino Haley
  • Paul VanWiechen

The program professors, instructors, staff, alumni and current learners wish them all the best in pursuing excellence in rehabilitation practice.




Valedictorian Speech of May 2012 Master of Rehabilitation Science Grads

Spring 2012 Grads: L-R: Physical Therapist Rebecca Shook, Physical Therapist Sarah Strickey and Occupational Therapist Sabrina Li

On Wednesday, May 23 these three therapists joined the growing number of Master of Rehabilitation Science graduates. Although only Vancouver-based Rebecca Shook was able to cross the stage at convocation, her colleagues Sabrina Li in Hong Kong and Sarah Strickey in Cary, North Carolina in the U.S. were in touch to share the occasion and prepare the traditional joint valedictorian speech. Please join us in congratulating these graduates and enjoy their celebratory words.

It is both thrilling and surreal to be submitting these remarks as we complete our MRSc journey! This program has followed us all through a multitude of life changes from new jobs to new babies to new countries. This program has remained the constant through all these events. It goes without saying that the nature of this program has allowed us to balance the other aspects of our lives while providing us with an invaluable way to stay current, grow as professionals, and develop practical skills to apply to our clinical practices.

Collectively, we have learned some valuable lessons throughout the course of our studies that are worth sharing.

  • Organization pays off
    Without good organization of notes, journal articles, to-do lists and references lists from the beginning, we’re not sure we would be completing this now- at least not with our sanity relatively intact!
  • No man (or woman) is an island
    Completing research in isolation without input from others may seem attractive at first (I get to do it my way, all the time!), but it makes for an inferior product in the end.
  • Research’s spill-over effect
    Through the process of completing this degree we have also internalized knowledge on evidence-based practice, literature searching, writing and referencing and have gleaned a much greater appreciation of what is required to support new ideas and initiatives in practice.
  • Research is fun
    There is an inherent thrill in discovering new information (or confirming your own hypotheses) and then writing about it in a manner that makes it accessible for other clinicians. And the fun doesn’t stop there; research findings lead to more questions which drives us all to keep studying!
  • Research is challenging
    As novice researchers it is easy to underestimate the complexity of conducting research. The amount of discipline and planning that is required to ensure that the integrity of the research is maintained cannot be under-valued.
  • Research takes time
    It is not a process that can be rushed. Allow more time than seems reasonable for every step and attempt to plan for every foreseeable obstacle
  • Buy-in is essential
    When developing or improving rehabilitation services, research is important, but ‘buy-in’ from stakeholders is also important! We need to ‘think outside the box’, then try to understand the stakeholders’ needs and use ‘their’ language.
  • It’s a small world after all
    The greatest advantage of this program is that it can be literally completed from anywhere in the world. The three of us are a testament to that as we cover three countries and two continents. The value of learning from colleagues around the globe has been paramount to our experience.

From our first (admittedly tentative) posts to our final assignments the faculty and staff associated with the MRSc program have encouraged and motivated us to succeed. Without their unwavering support, it would not be possible to complete a program of this magnitude from afar. We would specifically like to thank our major project supervisors, Dr. Lesley Bainbridge, Alison Gerlach, and Sue Stanton, whose guidance and encouragement were instrumental to the success of our major projects. Finally, we wish to thank our families, our friends and our colleagues who supported us in countless ways throughout this experience!

While we have looked forward to completing this degree for quite some time, we also know that we will greatly miss the stimulating discussions we have shared over the years with our fellow learners. Their enthusiasm has continually pushed us to think beyond the boundaries. To all our colleagues who are considering embarking on this journey – go for it; it is a challenging, yet rewarding experience.

Best of luck to all current and future MRSc learners; may you continue to set goals that inspire you!

Sabrina Li, Hong Kong

Rebecca Shook, Vancouver, BC, Canada,

Sarah Strickey, Cary, NC, USA

Wray and Mortenson Win CAOT 2012 Golden Quill Award

Ellie Wray and Patricia Mortenson received exciting news last week from the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT). They have received the Golden Quill Award for the publishing an exceptional article in the Canadian Journal of Occupational Therapy. The paper, Cultural competence in occupational therapists working in early intervention therapy programs, was published in 2011. It was based on the major project research conducted by Ellie as part of the requirement for completing her Master of Rehabilitation Science degree at UBC. Patricia Mortenson was Ellie’s research supervisor.

According to the criteria published on the CAOT website, an exceptional article is one that:

  1. Is rigorously designed or argued,
  2. Demonstrates a high level of scholarship and critical thinking,
  3. Enhances the empirical and/or theoretical foundation of the profession, and
  4. Provides a model for excellent scholarly writing in the field.

Ellie is now an instructor in RHSC 503: Reasoning and Decision Making and Patricia continues to teach in RHSC 501: Evaluating Sources of Evidence in the MRSc program.

Congratulations to both!

UBC Research Relay Webinars Begin Next Week

RESEARCH RELAYS for rehabilitation practice

Relay – either as a noun or a verb may involve passing information from one person to another — one practice to another — one location to another — often with a goal or destination in mind. Also associated with ensuring good connections and speed. All of these we hope to accomplish with this new webinar series brought to you by the UBC Rehabilitation Science Online Programs.

Please join us for one or all of these FREE webinars where graduates from the Master of Rehabilitation Science Program present their major project research. By relaying their results and any further work they have done in the area, we invite you to pick up the ‘virtual baton’ and discuss how it could influence your practice and work setting. Make new practice connections in just one hour!

CLICK HERE to register at least one week prior to session date

February 10 – noon to 1 pm PST
Parents’ Experience in Role Negotiation in the Family Centered Care Model of Infant Services
Presenter: Karen Hurtubise

February 24 – noon to 1 pm PST
Comparison of the Norwich Regime to the Static Splinting Protocol for Extensor Tendon Injuries
Presenter: Clare Faulkner

March 2 – noon to 1 pm PST
Development of a Points-based Caseload Measure for Community Based Pediatric Therapists
Presenter: Kathy Davidson

April 20 – noon to 1 pm PDT
Successful Intraprofessional Relationships between Therapists and Therapist Assistants
Presenter: Jennifer Stephenson

May 4 – noon to 1 pm PDT
Processing Strategies Parents Use to Synthesize Healthcare Data Related to their Child
Presenter: Karen Hurtubise

May 25 – noon to 1 pm PDT
Pediatric Feeding
Presenters: Janice Duivestein & Astrid St. Pierre

CLICK HERE to register at least one week prior to session date

World Occupational Day Online Conference on October 26

The Online Technology 4 Occupational Therapy group is sponsoring a 24-hour conference on World Occupational Therapy Day. Check out the program and consider viewing one or more sessions. Recent (2010) UBC Master of Occupational Therapy grad Doug Herasymuik is presenting on his international fieldwork experience.

The program site has a link to an international clock so you can schedule your time. Last year, the sessions were very stimulating and it was interesting to see how well the technology worked around the world. Although I couldn’t participate in many of the sessions due to work priorities, I did stay ‘tuned in’ for the day – was like having the radio on and tuned to a station just for OT! It’s definitely worth a try.

September Starts with few Glitches

Another hectic September is drawing to a close and despite some glitches everyone seems to have survived and is settling into the term. We experienced the fewest Vista difficulties so kudos to everyone at UBC IT Services for both pro-active strategies and quick fixes. They work long hours and many weekends to help deliver a trouble-free learning environment.

Thanks to everyone for accepting the Permanent ULRS (PURLS) into your studies. Respecting UBC copyright we no longer post PDFs of e-readings in the courses but if logged into the UBC library with our CWL ID the readings are just a click away with the PURLS. More kudos to Administrative Manager Andrea Walus, work study students Michael Haack and Judy Cu, and librarian Charlotte Beck for the countless hours spent finding and testing the PURLS, especially for off-campus access.

This Fall we admitted 26 new learners to the online programs: 8 Master of Rehab Science Learners; 6 Graduate Certificate learners (many we hope will transfer into the MRSc or MSc program) and 12 McMaster learners. We also welcome McMaster instructor Aileen Costigan who brings her enthusiasm and a keen interest in augmentative communication into her teaching in RHSC 501/ RS 705 Evaluating Sources of Evidence – all the way from Ithaca College in New York State. She joins returning instructors: Sandra Bressler, Dale Graham, Wilma Jelley, Ben Mortenson, Karen Pontello, Sue Stanton and Darene Toal-Sullivan.

Mary Clark Receives Teaching Excellence Award

An ability to read and think critically, create stimulating opportunities for learning, and a passion for learning are among the characteristics of effective teachers that Mary Clark possesses in spades.

I was thrilled to learn that Mary, the Associate Director of the Rehabilitation Science Online programs, and an online course instructor, was to be awarded one of only three University of British Columbia, Faculty of Medicine Clinical Faculty Awards for Excellence Teaching. The award was one of very few presented in person at the annual Faculty awards reception held at Sage Bistro at UBC on May 31.

Dr. Michael Nimmo, Director, Clinical Faculty Affairs Presents Award to Mary Clark

Mary began teaching courses in the Faculty of Medicine in 2006 when she designed and taught RHSC 581, ‘Writing to Enhance Practice’, an elective course in the online, UBC, Master of Rehabilitation Science program. Since then she has led the ongoing development of RHSC 581 and the Graduate Certificate course, RHSC 503, Reasoning and Decision-Making to ensure they remain current. Keeping up with the latest knowledge and research to inform course development and teaching is as important to Mary as contributing to knowledge development through research.

Rehabilitation Science online learners recognize well how Mary’s facilitation style in discussions and feedback on assignments helps them to apply their new knowledge to practice, and contributes positively to their learning experience. As one learner said, “she went above and beyond any expectations I had of a prof – and that made me feel that my learning was important to the whole university faculty, not just myself – or her.”

We are very fortunate to have Mary as a member of the Online Programs’ administrative and teaching team.

Please join us in congratulating Mary on this important award.

Sue Stanton, Director, Rehabilitation Science Online Programs

SRS 50th Anniversary Gala

The Golden Gala will celebrate 50 years of UBC Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy.  The event will take place Saturday, May 28 at 7 pm at the River Rock Hotel and Casino in Richmond.  There will be lots of food (including a sushi station, hor d’oeuvres and a chocolate dipping station), entertainment, and a no-host bar.  To learn more about this event, click here.

We are in the news!

What is so great about learning online? I think that is a question a lot of our prospective learners ask themselves when looking into our program. Quite a few of the inquiries that I get this time of year relate to this very issue.  Most of the learners are interested to hear that they are not required to be in Vancouver for any of their courses and can still maintain their full-time work status. The learner’s experience is just as rich if not richer for some than in the traditional face-to-face lectures. Job Postings magazine recently featured our program in an article, the cyber campus, and discussed whether one can still obtain the social and networking experiences with studying at a cyber campus.

See what our learners say about the program.

For more information on admissions see the Master of Rehabilitation Science program website.

Check Out the Latest CATS

Learners who completed the course Evaluating Sources of Evidence last Fall, are starting to post their Critically Appraised Topics (CATS). CATS begin to provide direction for practice by asking a clinical question, reviewing the literature and summarizing the best available research evidence on the subject. Download any of the following or previously posted CATS on the Master of Rehabilitation Science program website.

Brown, J. (2010). The Effectiveness of Removable Walking Casts and Total Contact Casting in Decreasing Healing Time of Diabetic Foot Ulcers

Evans, A. (2010). Support for aerobic exercise training in heart failure (HF) patients.

Holuboff, B. (2010). Does mobilization of the acutely ill elder on day of admission decrease their risk for developing delirium?

Richter, A. (2010). Is BAT or mCIMT more effective in producing improvement in affected UE ADL performance post stroke/CVA?

Shah, M. (2010). There is evidence to suggest that inpatient rehabilitation helps improve functional outcomes for elderly patients with hip fractures