Co-Authors: Tom Keating and Tobias Rickard
Why Participatory Design?
Cognitopia develops accessible software for people with cognitive disabilities to self-manage everyday activities using web-based tools that foster independence, while also enhancing support received from families, teachers, and adult service providers. In the early 2000’s, when I first began teaching in a community-based transition program, I had the opportunity to work with Cognitopia’s founder, Tom Keating, on the development of Picture PlannerTM, a visual calendaring application. Students and teachers from that transition program played an important role in shaping the development of Picture PlannerTM, and these experiences led us to the inescapable understanding that the entire development process needs to include input from the individuals who will be using the product. Continue reading
This past March, Eugene welcomed transition specialists and educators from across the state of Oregon for two days of professional development and networking at the 2019 Oregon Statewide Transition Conference. The theme of this year’s conference was Igniting Partnerships for Student Success, a natural fit for our session on Supporting Seamless Transition Through Technology for Self-Determination and Data Sharing. Continue reading
Cyclic Regression Causes Expensive Turnover, Painful Restarts, and Critical Struggles.
Decrease staff training costs.
Create smoother transitions for clients.
Preserve your investments in human resources.
Have a sustained impact on client quality of life.
You have a clear and special mission to support people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), promote their independence, and to bring meaningful improvements to their lives. You measure success by how well you can increase their abilities and help them solve daily challenges. That’s why your organization exists, and that’s what builds a smile on your face and warms your heart. You take all the steps needed to design a high-quality program with the service payments available to drive the supports you provide. Continue reading
Over the past year, many of you expressed an interest in learning more about the Cognitopia platform of apps to support self-determination and independence for individuals with autism and other cognitive exceptionalities.
In honor of Autism Awareness Month, we have two free webinars scheduled for April:
- Tuesday, April 16: 4pm – 5pm PST
- Thursday, April 18: 12pm – 1pm PST
Register here for either of these days and times and we’ll send you an email with event details. If these times don’t work but you’d like to participate at another time, let us know that too because we’ll be holding additional sessions at a later date.
For over 25 years, Tom Keating has worked on developing technology to improve the capabilities of people with cognitive disabilities. This has ultimately led to the development of the Cognitopia Platform for Self-Determination, which fosters greater independence and better support.
As 2018 comes to a close, we’re taking a moment to reflect upon the progress Cognitopia has made this year. We credit much of this momentum and success to you, our many wonderful students, teachers, clients, and organizations using the Cognitopia Platform for Self-Determination on a daily basis to facilitate person-centered planning, goal setting, and self-managed independent living and work. Continue reading
In many ways, Cognitopia got its start when our CEO and founder Tom Keating became the primary caregiver for his brother James who experienced autism. James moved from their parents’ home in New York to live with Tom and their other brother, Francis, in Eugene, Oregon in 1981. Continue reading
EUGENE, OR: OCT 25, 2018: Assistech Systems, LLC, a small business focused on research and development of technology to support employment, education, and community living for youth and adults with cognitive disabilities, together with its commercialization partner, Cognitopia, announce two new grant projects that have been funded through the National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), which is housed in the Administration on Community Living within the Department of Health and Human Services. The new funding will support the development of digital technology that augments the company’s existing platform of web apps designed for individuals with intellectual disabilities and autism. Continue reading
October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM). Endorsed by the US Department of Labor (DOL), the purpose of NDEAM is to help educate individuals about disability employment issues and to celebrate the many and varied contributions of America’s workers with disabilities.
This premise falls in line with the tools we are developing at Cognitopia. Continue reading
Earlier this week Cognitopia released a major upgrade to the MyLife ePortfolio application for IEP Self-Direction and Person-Centered Planning.
MyLife is being successfully used in elementary, middle, and high schools as well as in college programs and adult customized employment and supported living services across the United States. The new MyLife is more intuitive, customizable and user-friendly, strengthening the focus on self-determination—a core value of the Cognitopia Platform. The new design reflects the incredible feedback and suggestions we’ve received from all of these user groups. Continue reading
Nate’s Emerson’s interest in voice acting, theater, and comedy began when he was in high school. Using a WordPress blog to capture his strengths, interests, goals, and preferences, Nate was one of the first individuals to transition his electronic portfolio into the MyLife application. Continue reading
Last month we had our first webinar “Do it, Track it, Show it,” where Tom Keating spent the better part of an hour introducing attendees to the fundamentals of the Cognitopia Platform. He began with a general discussion on how the Cognitopia apps support self-determination, transition, and independent living and then moved into some of the core design features that facilitate both independent and shared/team use. Continue reading
The Traumatic Brain Injury Positive Strategies project (TIPS) is a collaborative effort among Assistech Systems LLC, the Center on Brain Injury Research and Training (CBIRT) at the University of Oregon, and Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Continue reading
March is Brain Injury Awareness Month. An annual campaign led by the Brain Injury Awareness Association of America (BIAA) and the United States Brain Injury Alliance, Brain Injury Awareness Month “provides a platform for educating the general public about the incidence of brain injury and the needs of people with brain injuries and their families.” Continue reading
“For people without disabilities, technology makes it better;
For people with disabilities, technology makes it possible…”
John D. Kemp
Cognitopia exhibited and presented on its innovative platform of self-management applications for individuals with cognitive disabilities at the 2017 Assistive Technology Industry Association (ATIA) conference in Orlando, Florida last month. ATIA is a gathering of people who research, create, manufacture, and use assistive technology — products, equipment, and systems that enhance learning, working, and daily living for persons with disabilities. Continue reading
Convening at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia November 17-19, 2016, the American Speech and Hearing Association (ASHA) annual conference welcomed 16,170 attendees from across the country and around the world. Continue reading
Tom Keating and I both grew up with younger brothers on the autism spectrum. We know that sometimes facing the seemingly “little things” is often more difficult than what other people will ever be able to understand. We also know how simple solutions to everyday problems can have a large impact on a person’s quality of life. Continue reading
Cognitopia was well-represented in beautiful Hood River, Oregon at the 2016 Conference of the Oregon Association of Vocational and Special Needs Personnel. Our team participated in three presentations featuring the newest Cognitopia web applications Goal Guide, MyLife, and ScanDo. Continue reading