AGE-WELL NCE and RERC-TechSAGE Aging Track

AGE-WELL NCE and RERC-TechSAGE seek to build on the potential of emerging technology, communication technology, and mobile technologies to innovate and improve the lives of those with long-term care needs and impairments that develop over time.

Five Workshops over two days will stimulate attendees whose mission is to bring these advances to a population that can age healthily. Goals include:

  • Improving the quality of life for individuals and the overall community 
  • Increasing interdisciplinary understanding of assistive technologies 
  • Training caretakers, students, researchers, and clinicians
  • Supporting people with conditions and that risk impairment due to age
  • Enabling independence, healthy aging, and full participation in society
  • Increasing knowledge of universally-designed technologies

These aging track workshops are offered as part of the full conference, June 28-30th

WS13 - Meeting Users’ Needs Through Technology: Guidance from Policy and Research
Date & Time: Wednesday, June 28, 2017 - 1:15pm to 2:15pm
Location: Newberry/Ascot
Presenter(s): Wendy Rogers, Tanya Gallagher


Meeting users’ needs is the hallmark of rehabilitation engineering and should be informed by policy goals set by international organizations and through assessments of individuals. This workshop will focus on older adults aging with a long-term impairment, specifically with respect to the potential for technology support. Dr. Tanya Gallagher will provide an overview of policy guidelines from the World Report on Disability. Dr. Wendy Rogers will discuss the World Report on Ageing and Health as well as interview data from individuals aging with sensory and mobility impairment. Together they will lead a panel discussion regarding experiences and lessons learned.

WS19 - Addressing Mobility Needs of Older Adults Through Innovative Powered Wheelchair Technology
Date & Time: Wednesday, June 28, 2017 - 4:00pm to 5:00pm
Location: Newberry/Ascot
Presenter(s): Emma Smith, Catherine Bigras, Pooja Viswanathan


Powered mobility provides opportunities for independence for individuals with limited mobility, including older adults. Innovative technologies including intelligent powered wheelchairs, collaborative control, virtual reality, and obstacle avoidance systems may address some of the needs of older adults to promote independent mobility and participation in their daily lives. Given the variety of needs of older adults, including declining physical and cognitive skills, technology solutions are required which address varying levels of autonomy. In this presentation, we will highlight innovative solutions to these challenges, ranging from technologies that promote independent driving to those which provide complete assistance to the user.

WS25 - Zero-effort Ambient Vitals Monitoring
Date & Time: Thursday, June 29, 2017 - 11:00am to 12:00pm
Location: Newberry/Ascot
Presenter(s): Isaac Sung Jae Chang, Jennifer Boger


People with chronic adverse health conditions often monitor their vital signs at home using conventional medical equipment and/or wearable devices. Self-monitoring at home presents a number of potential issues including incorrect usage, non-compliance, and stigmatization. In response, researchers have started investigating how ambient sensors (i.e., sensors embedded into everyday objects) might be used as a low-effort means of improving the frequency and quality of vitals monitoring. This workshop discusses zero-effort ambient monitoring technologies, with a focus on people with cardiovascular disease. Presenters will introduce relevant topics prior to engaging in group work and discussions to explore the new and trending area of autonomous physiological monitoring at home.

WS32 - Computer-based Assessments and Interventions for Cognitive Health
Date & Time: Thursday, June 29, 2017 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm
Location: Newberry/Ascot
Presenter(s): Adrian Rios Rincon, Antonio Miguel Cruz, Andrea Wilkinson


In this session, we present early results from three research projects, conducted in the context of the AGE-WELL National Centre of Excellence, developing computer-based tools for assessing and improving the cognitive function of seniors. The Centivizer (described in the first paper) is a wall-mounted ambient activity unit that provides engaging arcade-style interactions and rewards (e.g., coins, tokens, applause) for targeted activities. The second paper describes the UniCog Whack-a-Mole game, implemented on Android tablets. The game offers levels of systematically increasing difficulty to continuously engage and challenge seniors with dementia, while recording their performance and analyzing their progress. The third paper describes how an Emotiv-based EEG assessment can be combined with these games to measure the players’ engagement and arousal, while playing.

WS37 - Smart and Robotic Homes
Date & Time: Thursday, June 29, 2017 - 2:45pm to 3:45pm
Location: Newberry/Ascot
Presenter(s): Jon Sanford, Wendy Rogers, Brian Jones, Ariel Kapusta


This workshop will highlight research and development focused on smart and robotic technologies to facilitate aging in place. With an emphasis on evidence-based design, participants will discuss ongoing work aimed at understanding user needs, evaluating effectiveness of current technologies and development of the next generation of smart and robotic technologies. Specific topics include problems experienced in routine home activities by people aging with disability, limitations of current smart home systems designed to meet the needs of older adults, development of autonomous and collaborative robot assistants and smart bathroom technologies to facilitate toilet transfers.