POTAC Winter Training – Save the Date

Mary Jo McGuire, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA, is presenting a one-day course on Cognitive-Perceptual Management of the Brain Injured at Dominican University of California at San Rafael, Saturday, March 7, 2009.

Mary Jo has served as a Clinical Supervisor at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and was on the faculty of the Occupational Therapy Department at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has provided home and community-based occupational therapy services since 1990. She is a strong advocate for “client-centered, occupation-based, goal-oriented” therapy. In other words, she is committed to helping people identify meaningful functional goals, and uses real activities in the home and community to help them develop the skills to maximize safety and independence. She has specialized in the treatment of the clients with cognitive-perceptual impairments, and with the elderly.
Mary Jo serves as Director of the Home and Community Based Therapy services offered through the Rehabilitation and Health Center at Park West.

More details coming soon on the Events page.

Winter Training: Cognitive Perception

Cognitive Perception: Occupational Therapy Intervention for Clients with Cognitive Perceptual Impairments

with Mary Jo McGuire, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA

Saturday, March 7, 2009
8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

The Creekside Room
Dominican University of California
50 Acacia Avenue,
 San Rafael, CA 94901


In this fast-paced, comprehensive course, participants will explore how sensory-perceptual and cognitive impairments contribute to difficulties in occupational performance, while also assessing the auditory, tactile, vestibular, and visual systems. The presenter will review the role of attention, memory, higher level thinking skills and executive skills in cognitive-perceptual function, highlighting critical elements to evaluate and providing direction for therapeutic intervention. Treatment will be categorized into six groups: deficit-specific, compensatory, task-specific/environmental modification, meta-cognitive training, education, and social skills training. Treatment strategies will be presented using lecture, video-analysis, and case study anecdotes.

This course advocates for client-centered, occupation-based OT intervention that supports the development of client factors and skills and focuses on a return to habits, routines, rituals, and roles. The presenter will demonstrate the importance of incorporating the natural environment into the intervention program for people with cognitive-perceptual problems. Evidence based approaches and strategies will be highlighted, and clinicians will be challenged to stay focused on providing services that will make a difference in the client’s and family’s life.


Completion of the course will enable participants to:

  • Explain the importance of designing an OT program for clients with cognitive perceptual disorders which incorporates information from the client’s occupational profile, and integrates environmental factors.
  • Describe how to evaluate and address a client’s sensory processing skills/impairments into the occupational therapy program of a client with cognitive-perceptual disorders.
  • Describe common misperceptions and/or functional deficits associated with various sensory processing disorders.
  • Describe screening tools and standardized tests that can be used to establish a baseline for cognitive deficits and/or to provide evidence of progress in cognitive function.
  • Give examples of each of the following intervention approaches, and describe when it is appropriate/inappropriate to use the following:
    • Deficit specific training
    • Compensatory training
    • Task specific training/environmental modifications
    • Meta-cognitive training
    • Education of patient/family/caregivers
    • Social Skills training
  • Compare and contrast classic and current terminology used to describe different types of apraxia, and describe appropriate therapeutic approaches to use related to the type and severity of the disorder.
  • Describe published resources that can be used as part of evidence based practice in treating clients with cognitive-perceptual disorders.

Speaker Bio

Mary Jo McGuire, MS, OTR/L, FAOTA has over 30 years clinical experience working in acute care, in-patient rehab, out-patient rehab, skilled nursing facilities, and home health care; she is currently in private practice treating clients with traumatic brain injuries.


8:30 am                              Participant Registration. Continental Breakfast.
9:00 am – noon                 Theoretical Foundations
12:00 noon – 1:00 pm      Networking Box Lunch (included) – an opportunity to meet with peer practitioners
1:00 pm – 2:30 pm            Treatment Principles
2:30 pm – 4:30 pm            Practical Applications – applying principles to selected cases and practice settings


$125 for POTAC members & students; $150 for non-members. Certificate of Attendance provided to qualify for PDUs.

Registration & Payment Form

Download Registration Form

Click here for directions, campus map, and parking information.

Contact Information

Sandy Baker
Director, PACE, Dominican University of California
50 Acacia Avenue, San Rafael, CA 94901
415-485-3255;  fax 415-482-3575; ude.nacinimodnull@rekabs

Event Flyer

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