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2022 SOUTHWEST ORIENTATION & MOBILITY ASSOCIATION CONFERENCE

SWOMA 2022: Together Again!!

The Southwest Orientation & Mobility Conference is back... in person! This coming November we will be at the Austin Marriott North in Round Rock, TX. We can’t wait for you to join us!!

We are excited to be moving back to our face-to-face conference this year, with timely and informative keynotes and breakout sessions as well as the opportunity to connect with exhibitors.

Over 13 hours of CEU’s (ACVREP and SBEC) are offered through SWOMA this year.

Conference Dates:
• November 6th: Pre-Conference (Optional)
• November 7th - 8th: Main Conference

Registration Fees:
• Professionals - $150 (Early Bird) & $175 (Late)
• Family Member, Univ. Students, & Paraprofessionals - $50

Late registration begins October 1st, and all registration ends October 28th @ 5:00 PM Central! A late cancellation/no-show fee of $25 may be applied to registrations that are canceled less than 7 days prior to the start date of the event. This includes "no-calls, no-shows." If you suspect that you are unable to attend, please log into your account to cancel your registration or contact us ASAP to avoid this charge.

For more information about this conference, as well as a direct link for hotel reservations, please visit our SWOMA Conference Page.


Housekeeping & Welcome (Required)
(Monday, November 7, 2022 8:00 AM - 8:15 AM)
Session ID: 40482
Housekeeping & Welcome!
Seats Filled: 214 / 250
Fee: $175.00
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Atrium Terrace

Important Breakout Information:

You have the option of paying by check, purchase order, or credit card. Cash will not be accepted. Credit card payments will only be accepted online at the time of registration.

Your invoice will be sent via email immediately after registration to the primary email address listed in your user account. If your fee is being paid for by your school district or supporting agency, either with a check or a PO, then please be sure to forward your email to the appropriate person immediately so that payment may be processed.

Payment may be made in advance or received within 30 days of the event date. Instructions regarding where to send payment will be provided in your invoice/confirmation. If you are unable to supply a check or a PO number at the time of your registration, then you may simply enter "0000" and provide the number to us at a later time.


Pre-Conference I (Optional)
(Sunday, November 6, 2022 1:00 PM - 2:15 PM)
Session ID: 40483
The Development of the Human Visual System and Neuroplasticity in Visual Impairment
Seats Filled: 156 / 200
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Lotfi B. Merabet, OD Phd MPH

This lecture will review the anatomy, organization, and development of the human brain and visual system. The role of development and neuroplasticity on the brain will also be discussed.

Session Objectives:
• Review the organization of the brain and visual system.
• Review visual perception and its neurophysiological basis.


Pre-Conference II (Optional)
(Sunday, November 6, 2022 2:30 PM - 4:00 PM)
Session ID: 40484
Assessing Visual Processing Deficits in Cerebral Visual Impairment (CVI) Using Virtual Reality and Brain Imaging.
Seats Filled: 157 / 200
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Lotfi B. Merabet, OD Phd MPH

This lecture will focus on cerebral (cortical) visual impairment (CVI) and review its clinical profile. We will also discuss recent research using novel approaches to assess functional visual abilities and advanced brain imaging techniques to uncover the neurophysiological basis of CVI.

Session Objectives:
• Review the complex profile of CVI with an emphasis on higher order visual processing deficits.
• Discuss the use of virtual reality and eye tracking to assess perceptual abilities and brain imaging to investigate the neurophysiological basis of CVI.


General Session I (Required)
(Monday, November 7, 2022 8:30 AM - 10:00 AM)
Session ID: 40485
The Pedestrian Safety Crisis in the U.S.
Seats Filled: 214 / 250
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Angie Schmitt, Author and Urban Planner

More than 6,500 pedestrians are getting killed every year on American streets, representing an enormous 50 percent increase from the first part of the decade. Angie Schmitt, the author of the new book Right of Way: Race, Class and the Silent Crisis of Pedestrian Deaths in America will talk about the demographic and consumer trends that are putting people at increased risk. And why fundamentally, it is a problem of systematic, structural inequality.

Session Objectives:
• Learn why pedestrian deaths are rising in the U.S.
• Some advice about how to resolve the problem.


General Session II (Required)
(Monday, November 7, 2022 10:30 AM - 11:45 AM)
Session ID: 40486
Winning Change from the Grassroots
Seats Filled: 214 / 250
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Angie Schmitt, Author and Urban Planner

Winning road safety improvements is difficult work, especially in Texas. But around the country, progress is slowing happening. The session will introduce effective strategies for creating change around pedestrian safety, including building coalitions, elevating victims and promising legislative strategies.

Session Objectives:
• How to engage with planners and engineers.
• A look at the strategies used by the most successful grassroots campaigns nationwide.


Breakout Session I - Select 1 Option (Required)
(Monday, November 7, 2022 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM)
Session ID: 40487
Trust Through Touch
Seats Filled: 58 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 1

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Dr. Audra Bishop, COMS; Kelley Nicholson, COMS; Stephan Slawson, VIST Coordinator

Let’s reframe the “tactile defensive” terminology often heard about individuals with visual impairments. We will offer real-world experiences to illustrate concept development through tactile exploration. We will also discuss managing the tactile needs of learners given new guidelines with physical distancing. Do you trust us?

Session Objectives:
• Provide experiences similar to those our students face on a daily basis.
• Connect the importance of concept development to educational and life outcomes.
• Move beyond “tactile defensive” vocabulary to describe the tactile experiences for students with visual impairments.
• Provide ideas/strategies to manage new guidelines for physical distancing.


Session ID: 40488
Microsoft Soundscapes: Overview and Lesson Ideas
Seats Filled: 35 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 2

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Danika Dunlap, MA, COMS, CATIS

Learning a new app can be intimidating and figuring out how to apply it to O&M lessons for specific learners can be difficult, but this session will break down the iOS app, Microsoft Soundscape, into easily digestible pieces and give a variety of lesson plan ideas for the young toddlers through older adults that may be on your caseloads. Microsoft Soundscape is an orientation based app that can be used as a standalone or simultaneously with a navigation wayfinding app. There are dozens of functions that can be explored and we will do our best to address many of them.

Session Objectives:
• Identify the main features of the iOS app including beacons, markers, orientation buttons.
• Choose specific lesson ideas for a learner on caseload that could be implemented during a near future lesson.


Session ID: 40489
Sounds of the Intersection Symphony
Seats Filled: 71 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Andrew Bernet, COMS & Winford Haynes, NOMC

Come listen to two blind O&M instructors share how they work with adult clients at 4-way stops. We will share how we analyze the intersection, align for the crossing, and decide when it is the appropriate time to cross. Suggestions will be provided on how to break up the material into multiple shorter lessons.

Session Objectives:
• Breaking down the steps to successfully identifying the different parts of a stop sign controlled intersection through sound.
• Identifying multiple options for when to start a safe crossing at a stop sign controlled intersection.
• Breaking down the risk inherent to any option for crossing a stop sign controlled intersection.


Session ID: 40490
Exploring Orientation & Mobility Options
Seats Filled: 49 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 4

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Leslie Hoskins, COMS, Outreach Services Community Engagement Manager; Erica Ihrke, COMS, Manager of Extended Services; Barry Stafford, COMS

Orientation and mobility (O&M) training provides life-long skills for independent travel. O&M models traditionally include iterant O&M or center-based O&M as part of the full spectrum blind rehabilitation. Learn about an alternative approach and how to identify clients that are a good fit for this model. O&M skills for guide dog readiness will also be shared.

Session Objectives:
• Participants will learn an alternative model for teaching orientation and mobility (O&M).
• Participants will learn how to identify clients who could benefit from an alternative model of O&M training.
• Participants will learn the prerequisite O&M skills needed for guide dog travel.


Breakout Session II - Select 1 Option (Required)
(Monday, November 7, 2022 3:00 PM - 4:30 PM)
Session ID: 40491
Texas 2 STEPS: Creating O&M Opportunities
Seats Filled: 52 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 1

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Jill Brown; Marjie Wood; Debra Sewell; Gema Nelson

Motor development is critical for the child/baby to learn about itself and the surrounding environments. Self-Initiated, independent movement allows a child more opportunities to acquire information and understanding about their world. Orientation and Mobility is different from Physical Therapy when the child is not moving. Let’s take a deeper look into the activities of Texas 2 STEPS and how we can facilitate those incidental and structured learning opportunities that support early motor development.

Session Objectives:
• Learners will be able to identify 2 activities from the Texas 2 STEPS curriculum to support orientation and mobility skills for infants and preschoolers.
• Learners will be able to label what a structured learning opportunity is and identify activities to facilitate incidental learning.


Session ID: 40492
Complementing Traditional O&M Skills with Technology
Seats Filled: 59 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 2

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Joel Zimba, HumanWare

When one thinks about tools that are traditionally used during training, the white cane or dog guide are the most common. These tools offer the visually impaired traveler the ability to navigate their surroundings safely and efficiently. With the addition of informational tools such as navigation aids, the blind traveler is provided significantly more information than what can be offered by solely using traditional travel tools. This session will discuss the progression of specialized navigation aids, as well as how one can use refreshable Braille devices or embossed materials.

Objectives:
• Identify and describe 3 benefits of a specialized orientation tool when teaching students.
• Describe at least 2 methods for planning travel to a specific destination.
• Identify 2 ways GPS orientation information is useful to a visually impaired traveler while both in a vehicle and walking.


Session ID: 40493
Show and Tell strategies when working with students with multiple impairments
Seats Filled: 66 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Carolina Gonzalez, M.Ed., COMS & Katie Barnes, COMS

In this session we will share our experiences using videos, materials, and case studies, when teaching foundational concepts and basic orientation and mobility skills to students with multiple impairments.

Session objectives:
• Participants will learn a variety of techniques and activities to use when teaching basic skills and concepts in orientation and mobility.
• Participants will learn strategies to scaffold foundational skills to meet the needs of their learner.


Session ID: 40494
New O&M Reinforcement Games for Pre-K to Transition
Seats Filled: 37 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 4

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Marty Schultz & Jason Stewart, M.Ed.

ObjectiveEd’s suite of directionality and wayfinding apps is used for skill-building from preschool to high school. Starting with basic directionality to advanced multi-step instructions with true-to-life cardinal directions, mental mapping of the student’s neighborhood, campus or any real-world location, students can practice the skills you are teaching them.

Session Objectives:
• Learn how to avoid skill fade through proper skill reinforcement.
• Learn how O&M skills can be reinforced through “gamification” and how you can track your student’s progress on a web-dashboard.


Additional Training - Select 1 Option (Optional)
(Monday, November 7, 2022 4:45 PM - 5:45 PM)
Session ID: 40495
Hands On Experience with HumanWare O&M Technology
Seats Filled: 61 / 125
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Atrium Terrace

Important Breakout Information:
Hands on O&M technology experience is open to anyone who wishes to participate. Please bring your own cane and blindfold. HumanWare Staff will facilitate this opportunity.
Session ID: 40496
Exhibit Hall
Seats Filled: 45 / 125
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Grand Ballroom

Important Breakout Information:
Connect with our exhibitors in the hotel lobby to learn about products for supporting orientation and mobility! A complete listing of exhibitors will be provided soon... stay tuned for more details!

NO CEU CREDIT


Session ID: 40552
Blindfold Travel
Seats Filled: 33 / 125
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 1

Important Breakout Information:
Instructor Lead:
Blindfold practice is open to anyone who wishes to participate. You need to bring your own cane and blindfold. Orientation and Mobility Specialists will facilitate this opportunity for you to get hours practicing under blindfold.

Social (Optional)
(Monday, November 7, 2022 6:00 PM - 9:00 PM)
Session ID: 40497
2022 SWOMA Social
Seats Filled: 149 / 250
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Grand Ballroom

Important Breakout Information:
Share your most memorable O&M moments! Gather with colleagues for some fun and networking at the conference hotel for this year's SWOMA Social. Appetizers will be provided. Attendance is optional. However, if you do plan to attend, be sure to select this in your registration.
Breakout Session III - Select 1 Option (Required)
(Tuesday, November 8, 2022 8:30 AM - 10:00 AM)
Session ID: 40498
General Overview of the TSBVI In The Driver’s Seat: Introduction to Low Vision Driving Workshop
Seats Filled: 35 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 1

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Chuck Huss, COMS & Cindy Bachofer, PhD, CLVT

This session will provide an overview of the purpose and process of a multi-disciplinary workshop intended to Texas teens and their parents to what is entailed in driving with mild to moderate levels of central vision loss and bioptic lens systems. Special emphasis includes: determining if one meets the visual criteria for driving; an overview of the use of special accommodative devices called bioptics for distant vision enhancement, hands-on use of bioptics under controlled passenger-in-car situations; requirements for obtaining a bioptic driver’s license in the state of Texas, an opportunity to meet and converse with experienced bioptic drivers, alternate modes of independent transportation if driving does not become a reality; and resources to better prepare oneself for driving.

Objectives:
• Goal, purpose and planning that goes into such a multi-disciplinary workshop.
• Various aspects of the Texas low vision driver evalua


Session ID: 40499
Sound Travels
Seats Filled: 71 / 85
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 2

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Chris Tabb, COMS & Kaycee Bennett, M.Ed

Sound Travels is a collection of tools designed to facilitate communication and collaboration between audiologists and orientation and mobility specialists when working with students who have dual sensory loss or are Deafblind. This presentation will share resources for working with a team of professionals serving a student or client who is DeafBlind.

Session Objectives:
• Participants will learn about strategies for communication and collaboration between audiologist and orientation and mobility specialist for students who are Deafblind.
• Participants will learn about tools designed to facilitate communication and collaboration for students who are Deafblind.


Session ID: 40500
BFF with PVC
Seats Filled: 48 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Shay Utley

Participants will explore different types of equipment and devices for their students of all ages and abilities using items made of PVC pipe. Learn how to make these items and resources available to assist O&M’s in expanding their knowledge of how these items made of PVC can enhance the learner.

Session Objectives:
• Learners will walk away with the knowledge and resources of innovative and easy tools that you can make to assist students with independent mobility.
• Learners will correlate devices made to enhance students of all ages and developmental levels.


Session ID: 40501
Football vs. Eyeball: How to explain vision loss
Seats Filled: 60 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 4

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Toby Anne Penington, M.Ed., COMS, CLVT & Charlotte Simpson, MA, COMS, CLVT

Hear how two CLVT/COMS with over 30 years of experience educate their students, teachers, family members and others about vision loss using memorable sports analogies to support their training goals. You do not need to be a sports fan to enjoy this presentation!

Session Objectives:
• Participants will learn simple sports analogies and clever comparisons to explain anatomy of the eye and various eye conditions.
• Participants will be shown a variety of ways of talking to school support staff and family members about the value of training and the importance of incorporating O&M skills into functional situations.


Breakout Session IV - Select 1 Option (Required)
(Tuesday, November 8, 2022 10:30 AM - 12:00 PM)
Session ID: 40502
Role of the O&M in Pre-Driver Readiness
Seats Filled: 61 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 1

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Chuck Huss, COMS

For driving to become a reality, especially in cases where the young novice candidate never expected to drive, becoming a safe and confident pedestrian, followed by transitioning to a front seat active passenger-in-car is a prerequisite before beginning actual behind-the-wheel training. This presentation is intended to highlight the role that the O&M Specialist plays in getting such young novice (never been licensed) candidates prepared to handle the rigors and incremental steps associated with the driving task before getting behind-the-wheel and operating a motor vehicle.

Attendees will receive:
• An overview of teaching basic pedestrian pre-driver readiness skills.
• An overview of advanced/active passenger-in-car pre-driver readiness skills.


Session ID: 40503
Review of Evaluation Tools and Resources for Orientation and Mobility
Seats Filled: 107 / 105
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 2

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Mary Shore, COMS & Chris Tabb, COMS

This session will review tools and resources for orientation and mobility evaluations, including: infants, toddlers, school age, transition age, and adults.

Session Objectives:
• Participants will explore various options for evaluating learners in orientation and mobility and other areas of Expanded Core Curriculum (ECC).
• Participants will explore strategies for carrying out evaluation activities.


This session is full.
Session ID: 40504
Innovative and Comprehensive Internship Experiences: New Responsive Practices
Seats Filled: 23 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Lisa Lind, MSEd, LSCSW, TSVI, COMS & Beverly Jackson, M.Ed., COMS

The Children's Center for the Visually Impaired (CCVI) partnered with Stephen F. Austin State University to pilot a new internship experience for a future COMS and provide an array of learning opportunities. Join in the conversation on innovative practices to train our future leaders.

Session Objectives:
• Participants will explore the benefits and challenges of pilot program for internship experiences.
• Participants will learn key components of educating future COMS.


Session ID: 40505
Does Your Workload Seem Excessive? The New Workload Analysis Tool for Itinerant Vision Professionals, the VISSPA, May Help!
Seats Filled: 24 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 4

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Rona Pogrund, Ph.D., COMS, TSVI, Professor, Texas Tech University & Christy Householter, M.Ed., COMS, TSVI

Come learn about the new workload analysis tool, the VISSPA (Visual Impairment Scale of Staffing Pattern Analysis), that will be a companion to the VISSIT and O&M VISSIT to account for all those "other" duties that TSVIs and COMS do as part of their itinerant work week.

Session Objectives:
• Attendees will learn about the history and purpose of the new workload analysis tool, the VISSPA, for accounting for other tasks that itinerant TSVIs and COMS do in addition to direct and collaborative consultation services.
• Attendees will learn about the development of the new scale, the Visual Impairment Scale of Staffing Pattern Analysis (VISSPA), and how it can be used by itinerant vision professionals along with a demonstration of how the tool works with a case study


Luncheon (Optional)
(Tuesday, November 8, 2022 12:00 PM - 1:00 PM)
Session ID: 40506
Networking Lunch
Seats Filled: 186 / 250
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Atrium Terrace

Important Breakout Information:

Come join your colleagues at the SWOMA Networking Lunch! The meal is included in your registration fee so all you need to do is register for the lunch if you would like to attend.

NOTE: TSBVI Outreach gladly offers vegetarian options with our meals. Please be certain to select this accommodation in your user profile, if needed. Participants with food allergies, intolerances, and other dietary restrictions may wish to consider bringing or purchasing their own lunch.


Breakout Session V - Select 1 Option (Required)
(Tuesday, November 8, 2022 1:00 PM - 2:30 PM)
Session ID: 40507
Mapmaking Made Easy: Using an Online Tool to Make High-Contrast and Tactile Maps
Seats Filled: 98 / 100
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 1

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Danika Dunlap, MA, COMS, CATIS & Abby Koroma, MA, COMS, TCVI

How can you produce accessible maps for your O&M students faster and more accurately? In this make-and-take workshop, you will learn to use a free online tool to transform a Google Map into a to-scale, high-contrast and/or tactile map in less time than it takes to say “Sharpie and ruler!” Bring a laptop with internet access to this workshop.

Session Objectives:
• Gain an overview of the Braille Authority of North America guidelines for creating tactile maps for Orientation and Mobility.
• Use the Google Maps styling tool to adjust the visual elements, such as road thickness, contrast, and labels, around a given address.
• Use the Google Maps styling tool to create a map that contains content relevant to one of your students.


Session ID: 40508
Roadmap to an O&M Professional Learning Community
Seats Filled: 35 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 2

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Rikilynn Layher & Anne Zanger

Are you feeling isolated as an O&M? Are you struggling to address big city needs in small-town environments? Do you need to get re-energized about O&M? We’ve been there, and we have found a solution that works – an O&M Professional Learning Community. In this session, we’ll share what worked for us and help you get started addressing the needs in your area!

Session Objectives:
• Participants will identify needs in their region related to isolation/burnout/environmental access.
• Participants will identify a collaborator and establish initial steps forward to address their needs.
• Participants will identify what the roadblocks are on the way to success and create a plan to address them.


Session ID: 40509
Usher Syndrome
Seats Filled: 44 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 3

Important Breakout Information:
Presenters: Carolina Gonzalez, M.Ed., COMS

This session will explore the implications of Usher Syndrome. We will consider impacts on sensory systems, ability to connect with the travel environment, strategies for teaching and nurturing independence, and more.

Session Objectives:
• Participants will explore the implications of Usher Syndrome on independent travel and interaction with the environment and others in the community.
• Participants will explore strategies for working with those who have Usher Syndrome to maximize independence.


Session ID: 40510
FUNctional Brl 4 COMS
Seats Filled: 36 / 75
Location:Austin Marriott North at La Frontera, Ballroom 4

Important Breakout Information:
Presenter: Debbie "Cricket" Park, MA, CTVI/COMS & DJ Dean, M. Ed., TSVI/COMS

Having difficulty validating to your O&M student that a particular Braille sign for ""WOMEN” actually says ""WOMEN"" and not ""ELEVATOR""? Come share your thoughts about functional Braille in your specific situations with a Braille & O&M enthusiast. FUNctional Braille for COMS will be a fun & interactive session, showing participants how to create their own Braille “cheat” booklet to use as needed on their O&M lessons & to add to, as their particular situations demand.

Session Objectives:
• The participants will understand the overall glimpse of the braille code, especially where it relates to environmental signs.
• The participants will receive ideas on the creation of their own individual braille cheat booklet to assist them in their O&M lessons.




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