Thursday, June 16, 2011

The Tampa Conference: A Dedication to Those Who Provided Knowledge and Understanding

Attending a conference is always a time to let your hair down, but it also provides a golden opportunity to learn about trends in your profession. In addition to doing my own conference presentation, I went with a select group of trainings in mind and wanted to highlight those trainers I thought hit the mark and in the process really impressed me. As usual, click each photo for a better view.

There was a sizable number of attendees who made their way from across the state to attend the conference as you can see from this photo.

One vendor in particular got my attention. He was demonstrating a voice recognition system that promised to take some of the work out of the note taking required following a session.

You simply talk into a mic and your computer types out your notes as you speak, right down to sending an email. You can even program specific phrases relevant to your specialty and the system will insert those phrases as you speak. The term to describe this is "Macros" for the computer literate. It really was fascinating. I've included a short clip so you can see the demonstration.

There were some very interesting workshops that made my selection pretty difficult. But, I resolved to stick to my learning goals and attended those I had pre-selected.

I was more than impressed by PHD Stephen E. Wong of Florida International University. His training on “Single Case Evaluations” centered on research methods to help document the hoped for outcome of interventions. In other words: Research methods to determine if what you are doing has been effective. I have to smile as I think about his presentation. I say that because he would make a great “Method” actor. He performed various client roles to make number crunching interesting.

He even stayed behind to answer questions and make certain everyone understood right down to the last detail.

What most people don’t realize is that based on rules and regulations most therapists have to operate not only as therapist but also part lawyer to practice within the lines of permissible behavior. Two unsung heroes were Linda Kartell and Barbara Brakel. They stepped in to conduct an Ethics workshop for a presenter who could not attend, in addition to their own workshop later during the conference.

They answered questions while also making you think your way through the rules and regulations. And, they did it with grace and good humor.

All in all I enjoyed myself throughout the Conference and learned a great deal in the process. I can only hope that those who attended my workshop came away with the same feeling.

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