View the full #BIRT Conference 2017 brochure

Our workshops and symposia focus on different aspects of work for clinicians, practitioners and academics. Download our quick guide or see below to help you choose which you want to attend.

Day one: Wednesday 27th September

Morning sessions

10:00 - 11.00

Emotion technology - Professor Rosalind Picard, Director of Affective Computing Research Group, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA.

This talk will give an overview of the latest developments in wearable sensing technology to track emotion, and its potential applications to improve health and prevent disease.

11:00 - 11:30


11:30 - 12:30

Neurobehavioural disability and rehabilitation - Professor Tom McMillan, Professor of Clinical Neuropsychology, University of Glasgow, UK.

This talk will highlight how factors such as population need, new legislation and technological developments may pose a challenge but also lead to improving neurobehavioural rehabilitation.

Day One: Afternoon sessions

13:30 - 14:30

Executive functions and rehabilitation - Professor Brian Levine, Senior Scientist, Rotman Research Institute, University of Toronto, Canada.

This talk will provide an overview of research on the processes and structural basis of executive function, and how findings have informed the development of new assessment tools and interventions.

14:30 - 15:30

Patient treatment matching: developing process specific memory interventions - Professor Russell Bauer, Professor of Clinical and Health Psychology and Neurology, University of Florida, USA.

A number of treatments are available for memory function, yet these are not always beneficial to all patients. Professor Bauer’s talk will discuss the first study designed to match specific information-processing deficits with the most appropriate rehabilitation therapy.

15:30 - 16:00


16:00 - 17:00

Positive psychology - Professor Jon Evans, Professor of Applied Neuropsychology, University of Glasgow, UK.

This talk will describe how the science of positive human emotion and well-being can be applied in brain injury rehabilitation to promote satisfaction about the past, happiness in the present, and hope for the future.

Day Two Morning: Thursday 28th September

Choose one workshop / symposium from each time slot below, each session will fall under one of the categories below.

  • Clinical Skills: These sessions are designed to provide a forum to share good practice and acquire clinical skills relevant to those involved in the assessment, care and rehabilitation of people with brain injury and their families.
  • Emerging evidence will focus on areas of innovation in the field which are currently under development and evaluation.
  • Research and service improvement: These sessions focus on sharing knowledge and skills relevant to facilitating the growth and translation of evidence through practice.

09:00 - 10.30

1. Developing social communication skills after ABI- a clinical skills session

This two part session, conveyed by three experienced Speech and Language Therapists, will share ideas for group activities and discuss case studies focused on the rehabilitation of social communication skills, including online dating and conversation partner training.

2. Intensive upper limb neurorehabilitation- a clinical skills session

The reputed team from University College London will be sharing their experience on integrating innovation into practice in treating patients with upper limb deficit.

  • Dr Nick Ward, Honorary Consultant Neurologist and Reader in Clinical Neurology
  • Fran Brander, Clinical Specialist Physiotherapist
  • Kate Kelly, Clinical Specialist Occupational Therapist, University College London

3. Thinking technology: Technology to support self-control of behaviour- an emerging evidence session

This four-part session will give and overview of the impact of executive problems on functional ability and present some of the latest developments in technologies especially designed to assess and support problem solving, task monitoring, emotional regulation and other aspects of thinking and feeling.

  • Therapy and assessment in embodied virtual reality
    • Zack Lyons, Doctoral Research Engineer
    • Dr Leon Watts, Senior Lecturer, Department of Computer Science
      University of Bath
  • Technologies to support persons with cognitive impairment
    • Dr Inga-Lill Boman, Occupational Therapist, Karolinska Instituet, Danderyd Hospital, Sweden

11:00 - 12.30

4. Social rehabilitation in action- a clinical skills session

This session will focus on the psycho-social impact of acquired brain injury and illustrate how a multidisciplinary approach making the use of different techniques, such as social stories, self-coaching videos, working with couples can result in better outcomes and improved relationships.

5. Pharmacotherapy in brain injury rehabilitation- a clinical skill session

Evidence on the use of psychotropic medication for people with brain injury is limited. In this three part session you will learn some of the basic prescription principles and find out the potential benefits of pharmacotherapies to maximise engagement in rehabilitation and clinical.

  • An overview
    • Dr Richard Greenwood, Consultant Neurologist and Lead Clinician, Acute Brain Injury Service, University College London Hospitals
  • Use of atypical antipsychotics in challenging cases
    • Dr Saduf Riaz, Consultant Psychiatrist, Graham Anderson House, BIRT
  • Medications useful in the acute and sub acute management of acquired brain injury cases

6. Live research lab- part of the research and service improvement sessions

Join a team of researchers and the National Institute for Health Research to share your views about knowledge gaps and identify research questions key to the future development of brain injury rehabilitation.

  • Dr Andrew Bateman, Neurorehabilitation Clinical Lead, Oliver Zangwill Centre
  • Dr Nick Behn, Research Fellow, City University of London
  • Kathy Tier, Research Manager, National Institute for Health Research

Day Two Afternoon: Thursday 28th September

Choose one workshop / symposium from each time slot below

13.30 - 15.00

7. Goal Management Therapy- a clinical skills session

Professor Brian Levine, one of the developers of Goal Management Training (GMT) will give a practical workshop about this interactive and structured program designed to help individuals with impairments in executive functioning improve their organization and ability to achieve goals.

8. Service improvement and research: A step-by-step guide to get set and go- part of the research and service improvement sessions

This session is dedicated to service improvement and research. Join us to get some practical tips to help overcome some of the challenges we face when implementing service evaluation projects in active clinical settings.

Ahead of the session, we are inviting all colleagues working in neurorehabilitation to share their views about the barriers to service improvement and research in clinical settings by answering this 5-minute questionnaire.

Please click here to take part.

9. BIRT Question Time on Concussion- an emerging evidence session

Join a panel of experts to hear an update about the latest research findings on the impact of concussion and ask questions to help translate this knowledge into practice.

15.30 - 17.00

10. Resilience and positive psychology- an emerging evidence session

Third-wave and positive psychology inspired therapies prioritize the promotion of joy and contentment by developing ways to support people to build good lives and enabling them to flourish. Less focus is given to problems, which reduce as a ‘side-benefit’. This two-part session will explore the value of these approaches in promoting the resilience of care staff, and improving the well-being of people with brain injury.

  • Compassion focussed training for staff - Dr Miles Rogish, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, York House, BIRT
  • A positive psychology intervention for people with ABI - Professor Jon Evans, Professor of Applied Neuropsychology, University of Glasgow
  • Using acceptance, mindfulness and values in living with acquired brain injury - Dr David Gillanders, CPsychol, Senior Lecturer in Clinical Psychology, School of Health in Social Science

11. New ways of identifying rehabilitation needs and working with families in the community- an emerging evidence session

Persisting difficulties resulting from a brain injury are often complex and subtle, and can significantly impair function, thus being frequently described as ‘hidden disability’. This workshop will introduce a tool to assess care and rehabilitation needs in people with a history of brain injury, and share some practical tips on how to support individuals and their families.

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