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June 22, 2016

Connecting Ideas in a Time of Transformation

Introducing all-day kindergarten was just a part of a massive transformation in early learning and child care in Ontario. From provincial governance to curriculum details to work relationships, everything is changing. Researchers at Conestoga College in Waterloo are working with the Region of Waterloo Children’s Services Division to help make sense of those changes for stakeholders in the region — all the educators, planners and administrators who contribute to different aspects of care and education for very young children. “They are being asked to embrace a pedagogy that is much more emergent, much more process-oriented,” said Goranka Vukelich, director of... Read more
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June 22, 2016

Going Deep in the Brain to Control Outward Attention

Two researchers at Collège Montmorency, in Laval, are introducing a new approach to helping students with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) — training them to reach deep inside to modulate their brain waves to control attention. Andrea Szabo and Hélène Brisebois were both practicing psychologists before they became professors of psychology at Collège Montmorency, and both were struck by how many students with ADHD were struggling to succeed at the college. Now, having received a grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, a part of its Community and College Social Innovation Fund, they are developing a neurofeedback lab... Read more
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June 22, 2016

Different People, Regular Roommates

Finding a roommate who’s a good fit is a relief for most of us. For people with intellectual disabilities, it could be a lifeline — an opportunity for more inclusion in society. “Friendly Housemates” is a joint program being developed by Centennial College researchers and Community Living Toronto to make that lifeline available to more people. The idea of Friendly Housemates is to pair people with an intellectual disability and undergraduate students in shared living arrangements. The students get free accommodation, a bursary and a guaranteed summer job in exchange for their role in helping their “friendly housemate” to live... Read more
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June 22, 2016

Returning to Traditional Knowledge for Solutions to Modern Problems

In Northern Québec, just inland from James Bay, stands the Cree Nation of Chisasibi, a new home for an ancient people. The history that brought a nomadic nation to this small village caused disruption in every aspect of life, culture and knowledge. Now, the Chisasibi nation is working with researchers, led by the Cégep de Victoriaville, to establish new approaches to food security based on traditional knowledge. The project is funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, out of its Community and College Social Innovation Fund. There are about 4,000 Chisasibi Cree. For them, as for other northern... Read more
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March 15, 2016

Tracking your Gym Time

Student researchers at Ottawa’s Algonquin College have helped advance the next generation of fitness through a Virtual Personal Training app developed in partnership with an Ottawa start-up company, Gymtrack. Gymtrack’s two young founders approached the Health and Wellness Research Centre at Algonquin College for assistance with the research and development of a novel concept using a combination of hardware and software to track workouts in fitness facilities. The system keeps track of clients’ workouts using a bracelet worn by each member and a “smart pin” attached to each piece of exercise equipment. A research project was established which included two... Read more
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March 15, 2016

A Posture Correction Aid for Wheelchair Users

Wheelchair-bound patients in long-term care facilities often have discomfort from slouching and being unable to reposition themselves. And caregivers suffer from strain injuries trying to lift patients into a more upright posture. In response to a request from a Halifax long-term care facility several years ago, Nova Scotia Community College occupational therapy students designed a posture correction aid to assist both patients and caregivers. A Nova Scotia manufacturer is now refining the design with the help of the college’s mechanical engineering technology researchers. MacKenzie Atlantic Tool & Die is a Nova Scotia-based company specializing in manufacturing highly diverse products ranging... Read more
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March 14, 2016

Seniors Care

Dr. Veronique Boscart is the CIHR/Schlegel Industrial Research Chair for Colleges in Seniors Care at Conestoga College working on studies to improve care for seniors and training for gerontology nurses in Canada. Dr. Boscart leads Conestoga’s activities with the Schlegel-University of Waterloo Research Institute for Aging, in Kitchener, Ontario. The institute’s mandate is to enhance the quality of life and care for older adults through research, education, and practice. The focus of Dr. Boscart’s efforts is the development of evidence-informed training programs for staff already working in long term care, and for students in post-secondary programs that lead to careers... Read more
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March 14, 2016

Making Technology Accessible for Wheelchair Users

People with mobility issues often have difficulties using smart phones and other common electronic devices. In an attempt to meet this need, a small Toronto technology start-up has developed a set of open software and hardware tools called Tecla that facilitates access to electronic devices for people with mobility impairments. Komodo Open Labs (KOL) envisioned a user-friendly Bluetooth interface device that would give individuals with special needs access to commercial smart phones. But the goal went further: the company wanted to make it smaller, mountable, and lower-cost, letting more people join the conversation. The device had to be easy to... Read more
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March 14, 2016

Cloud-based Software for Connected Wellness

Seneca College’s Centre for Development of Open Technology (CDOT) and NexJ, a leading provider of cloud-based software for customer relationship management, have been working together on projects since 2009. The partnership began with Seneca developers creating several software adapters to enable the connection of the NexJ Express Server to implemented databases. Impressed with the centre’s work, NexJ approached its researchers again when they started working on expanding NexJ Connected Wellness, a cloud-based platform for empowering patients to manage their own health and wellness. Using Bluetooth technology, CDOT researchers created mobile applications that would enable medical devices to transfer data directly... Read more
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March 14, 2016

Improving Tools to Diagnose Eye Disease

As the population ages, retinal disease causing loss of sight, such as macular degeneration and glaucoma, are increasingly common. The ability to detect these diseases efficiently and as early as possible is extremely important. The Centre collégial de transfert technologique en optique-photonique (OPTECH) affiliated with Cégep André-Laurendeau undertook a project in collaboration with Optina Diagnostic to improve the camera that takes detailed images of eyes to detect retina problems. Optina Diagnostic is a private company that provides retinal cameras that use super spectral imagery. This technology provides spectral and anatomical data from the back of the eye, allowing for earlier... Read more
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