Building the brain: A neurobiological approach to assessment and intervention - Calgary, AB
19-Oct-2018 8:00 AM - 20-Oct-2018 4:00 PM
2828 23 St NE
Calgary, Alberta T2E 8T4

Building the brain: A neurobiological approach to assessment and intervention

Calgary, Alberta

Friday, October 19 to Saturday, October 20, 2018 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (Mountain Time)

This two-day integrative, holistic workshop will provide you with a scientific and theoretical framework for assessment and intervention of ANY brain of ANY age. This course workshop draws on the expansive brain-behavioral sciences to energize and empower any practice, demystifying the process of neuro-rehabilitation. These concepts and tools will be easily incorporated into your intervention setting.

Workshop topics:

Day 1

  • Neurobiology of relationship and attachment; setting the stage for learning
  • Arousal, attention and learning
  • Tools to prepare the brain/body system for learning and retraining labs
  • Techniques to balance the system: Quantum healing
  • The healing brain:
    • Neurogenesis
    • Neuroplasticity
    • Neurodevelopment
  • Clinical applications of current knowledge on how the brain learns
    • Auditory
    • Visual
    • Vestibular
    • Sequential processing
    • Brain dominance
  • Mental practice/lab
  • The stress connection
  • The gut brain/inflammation
  • Exercise and the brain
  • Sedentary lifestyle
  • What the science tells us

Day 2

  • Theoretical framework for a neurointegrative approach to assessment/intervention
  • An interactive approach to assessment: a new perspective
  • Assessment (lab/hands on)
  • Tools to wire the brain for retraining and relearning functional skills
  • Evidence-based strategies: visual; vestibular; tactile; auditory
  • An integrative approach to intervention/lab/hands on
  • Troubleshooting for functional outcomes
  • Research and resources

Goals and learning objectives:
After taking part in this workshop, participants will: 

  1. Describe the neurobiology of therapeutic relationship and attachment as both a healing force in therapy and as the foundation for developing self-regulation.
  2. Identify and describe the stress response as an antagonist to learning.
  3. Apply an understanding of the role of arousal as the driving force for attention, learning and rehabilitation.
  4. Develop a protocol for assessment of any clients who presents for neuro-rehabilitation.
  5. Develop a skill set of “tools” for building the brain as an aspect of neuro-rehabilitation.
  6. Develop a preliminary understanding of the brain/body self-healing mechanisms and the implementation of complementary healing techniques.

Target audience:
Occupational therapists, occupational therapist assistants, physiotherapists, speech-language pathologists and special education teachers who work with people of any age who have cognitive impairments and who would like to improve their skills in assessment and treatment.

Please note: Each participant is responsible to ensure they apply the information within the context of their licensure, provincial/territorial legislations, institution regulations, scope of practice, etc.

Areas of practice
Mental health, cognitive, neurological/neuromuscular, general physical health, health promotion and wellness

Client age groups
Young children (0-4 years old), children (5-12 years old), adolescents (13-19 years old), adults (20-64 years old), seniors (65+ years old)

Workshop level:
Advanced (more than 5 years of experience in this specific practice area)

Robin Harwell M.A., CCC-SLP

Robin Harwell is a licensed and certified speech pathologist with over 35 years in practice. She utilizes the latest in neuroscience to support her brain building approach for wiring and re-wiring the brain for improved function. Robin runs a small private practice while consulting with other programs to integrate her brain building approach into their already ongoing work. She most recently brought this brain building approach to ManeGait Therapeutic Horsemanship in McKinney, TX. This program is called GaitWay to the Brain. Robin presents at conferences and provides workshops throughout the U.S. and internationally. In whatever setting Robin provides services, she utilizes the latest information in neurology, psychology, immunology and the behavioral social sciences to target building or re-building the brain’s ability to change itself regardless of age or diagnosis.

Registration fees:
Early bird rates: Registration and payment completed by August 22, 2018

CAOT Member and Associates

Student Associates

Non member*




Plus applicable taxes

Regular rates: Registration and payment completed between August 23, 2018 and October 3, 2018

CAOT Member and Associates

Student Associates

Non member*




Plus applicable taxes

Please note that for the 2017-2018 workshops, CAOT has reduced the registration fee for all registrants instead of offering a group rate. When available, CAOT offers late registration for workshops at the regular rate plus a $50 administration fee. We will only be able to accommodate if there is sufficient space.

Registration deadline: October 3, 2018 

*In many cases it would be more cost effective to become a CAOT Member or Associate rather than pay the non-member rate. See “Can a non-member register for a Workshop?” in our Workshop FAQ to know which membership category you are eligible for. 

Included with your registration fee:
Two-day workshop, electronic copy of presentation slide handouts, coffee/tea/water during mid-morning and mid-afternoon breaks, opportunity to network and make connections with other occupational therapists interested in this topic, one-hour Q&A webinar with the presenter approximately 2 months following the workshop, electronic certificate of attendance.

The Workshop registration fee has been reduced by $80 by not including lunch and snacks. Lunch and snacks are to be done on your own.

Q&A Webinar
Save the date:
 Wednesday November 14, 2018 from 12 p.m to 1 p.m EST
Login details will be sent out one week before webinar. 

Maximum number of registrants:

Workshop location:
Executive Royal Hotel Calgary
2828 23 St NE
Calgary, Alberta T2E 8T4

Cancellation/refund policy:
All refund requests must be sent in writing to the CAOT National Office. Requests received prior October 3, 2018 will be given a 50% refund. CAOT will not provide a refund after the registration deadline. CAOT reserves the right to cancel or modify the offering.

CAOT reserves the right to modify the workshop title, description, registration dates and information on the workshop webpage. CAOT will notify participants on or before September 7, 2018 if there is insufficient registration by that date and reserves the right to cancel a Workshop due to insufficient registration up until September 21, 2018. CAOT reserves the right to modify the offering, interrupt Workshops, change the timing of a Workshop, cancel a Workshop or change the location of a Workshop due to the presenter no longer being able to present the Workshop, severe weather, power failure, building closures or other special circumstances that are beyond the control of CAOT by notifying participants as soon as possible. If the Workshop is cancelled by CAOT, registrants will receive a full refund of the registration fee. CAOT will not be responsible for other costs or expenses incurred by registrants as a result of any such changes.

Additional questions?
If you would like to inquire on accessibility options available to you, please contact or 1-800-434-2268 ext. 222.

If you would like to attend this workshop in another location, please complete this brief survey to let us know. Please note that the registration fee may vary from one location to another as there are different costs involved.

We invite you to consult the Workshop FAQ for an immediate response to the most frequent questions we receive regarding Workshops. Please do not hesitate to contact us at or 1-800-434-2268 ext. 222 should you have additional questions or concerns.

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