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  • 27 Sep 2015 16:54 | SIE Support (Administrator)


    From the Editor:

    As I write this, I am still on a high from the many wonders of ESIC 2015. I hope that those of you who attended ESIC 2015, or viewed it online, will feel this too. We were wowed by inspirational speakers, developments in work settings and research, as well as poster presentations, equipment and resources. 

    Speakers demonstrated how SI can be delivered for the benefit of an ever broadening clientele, in any setting, through creativity and innovation; and how the SI research-base is ever strengthening. Sponsors’ exhibitions gave us the opportunity to look at and try out a range of equipment and books, both new and familiar. We were updated on progress towards the Ayres 2020 Vision; and a call went out for more people, in more countries, to become involved.  

    The SI Network UK & Ireland launched a book, “Life Changing Learning through Sensory Integration” and new initiatives called ‘Sensory Live’ and the ‘No1therapist’.  Meanwhile, 255 delegates from 23 countries had the opportunity to meet, share knowledge, establish connections, and to enthuse one another.

    The Thursday workshops provided the opportunity for delegates to learn directly from some of the world leading SI therapists: Zoe Mailloux, Roseann Schaaf, Diane Parham and Tina Champagne.  

    This month’s EmphaSIze focuses on Trauma and Attachment.  Neuroscience has demonstrated that, when a person experiences extreme trauma, this can impact use of the higher, thinking functions of the brain, fight / fright / flight behaviours can dominate, and trauma can be ‘held’ in the body. Sensory Integration informed approaches have been found to really help this client group to recover.   

    This edition has been enriched by ideas drawn, in part, from Tina Champagne’s workshop and Eadaoin Bhreathnach’s presentations at ESIC 2015. I hope you find it interesting and useful.

    The ESIC baton has been handed to Elizabeth Soechting from Austria as we look forward to ESIC 2017 “Integrating Research with Practice” in Vienna (June 1-3 2017). We hope to see you there!  

    Cathy Warne

    Editor, EmphaSIze

  • 24 Sep 2015 10:37 | SIE Support (Administrator)


    You can now see two more ESIC 2015 presentations on video:

    Keynote  by Dr Eynat Gal -  The Meaning and Implication of Sensory Experiences for Participation: The Voice of People with Autism Spectrum Disorders.

    Presentation by Dr Annemarie Lombard - Sensory processing and performance of adults in the workplace.

    If you attended the congress, accessed the webcast or have already purchased the videos, then you can see the new presentations without additional charge by accessing the link already provided.

    If you missed ESIC 2015, you can access 20 videos of the presentations delivered in the Great Hall, 36 pdf presentation slides, plus 21 pdf posters for only £24.99.

    See more information in our webshop here.

  • 16 Sep 2015 20:44 | SIE Support (Administrator)
    A global audience of more than 400 researchers, scientists and professionals joined the SI Network (UK & Ireland) on September 10 to 12 for three days of life changing learning at ESIC in Birmingham, both in person and online via live streaming.

    The burning issue at the Congress was the growing body of evidence to support Ayres Sensory Integration being an evidence based practice, whilst at the same time the effectiveness of Ayres Sensory Integration keeps being called into question. The expert keynote speakers and therapists attending ESIC were on the front-foot when it came to presenting a strong case for ASI:

    Professor Roseann Schaaf of Thomas Jefferson University led the pro evidence argument, announcing, “We have it!” She went on to demonstrate how a recent study, led by herself and Dr Zoe Mailloux into Occupational Therapy using Ayres Sensory Integration for children with autism, meets the criteria for an evidence-based practice according to the PRISMA guidelines (Adopted by the American Journal of Occupational Therapy), The National Professional Development Center on Autism Spectrum Disorders and the Council for Exceptional Children.

    Professor Schaaf says:

    ”We need to get this kind of recognition from individuals outside and within the profession who’ve been questioning the value and efficacy of ASI. So I think it is a huge leap forward.”

    Mag. Elisabeth Soechting, co-founder and President of the Austrian SI organisation GSIOe and PhD student at the University of Vienna, then unveiled her incisive review of studies into the effectiveness of ASI between 2007 and 2013. She found that three studies fulfilled the requirements of a Randomised Control Trial and that many more showed supportive evidence based practice for ASI. Elisabeth also discovered that over 50% of the studies that claimed to be evaluating SI, were in fact looking at sensory approaches, such as sensory rooms and did not employ ASI therapy: that is following Ayers principles as set out in the Fidelity Measure (2007).

    Building on the identified need for more research of good quality, the SI Network took the opportunity to announce a series of research grant awards with a total value of £20,000.

    Gemma Cartwright, the SI Network’s Research Development Director, says:

    “Our challenge is to develop the evidence base for Ayres’ Sensory Integration including sensory strategies prescribed following a thorough assessment (Data Driven Decision Making Process (2104)). Doing this will help raise awareness, shape training and education programmes and ensure therapeutic interventions are accessible and available to any individual who may benefit. Without demonstrating ASI is a cost effective approach, with an ever increasingly robust evidence base, the application of ASI as an approach and an effective intervention will continue to be in question.”

    For more information about the research grants please see here.

    - ENDS -

    Editor’s notes:

    Sensory Integration is based on the pioneering work of occupational therapist Dr A. Jean Ayres, diagnosing, treating and supporting those with sensory integration challenges. These difficulties can occur in combination with other diagnoses - including Autistic Spectrum Disorders, Attention Deficit, Learning Disabilities, Developmental Co-ordination Disorder, (DCD/Dyspraxia), Mental Health and Regulatory Disorders including attachment disorder, self- harm, personality and anxiety.

    Sensory Integration Network is the leading membership body and training organisation of Ayres' Sensory Integration in the UK & Ireland. The Sensory Integration Network professionally, sustainably and tenaciously campaigns for the needs of people who require sensory integration interventions and the therapists that deliver them. A not-for-profit organisation, the SI Network promotes the theory and practice of Ayres' Sensory Integration and provides courses including Master’s accredited training for therapists (OT/PT and SALT) in collaboration with Ulster University.

  • 13 Sep 2015 20:25 | SIE Support (Administrator)

    The Scientific Committee and organising team would like to thank the keynote speakers, the abstract presenters and everyone who supported, attended or participated online from around the world, in making ESIC 2015 such a great success. 



  • 04 Sep 2015 18:20 | SIE Support (Administrator)

    Now you can join the two day ESIC 2015 congress from the comfort of your own chair as we will be streaming the keynote speeches and presentations from the Great Hall, live across the globe!

    Includes access to all the ESIC presentations and posters. Opportunity to ask questions of the presenters through our social media team.

    See more information and register online



  • 10 Aug 2015 21:18 | SIE Support (Administrator)


    The latest issue of SensorNet magazine is now available to view or download from our website. SensorNet is a member’s only resource, so if you have not yet joined us, check out our membership offers for new subscribers!

    SensorNet 44, which is dedicated to SI in Ireland (including N.Ireland), includes:

    • A letter from the Chair of the Sensory Integration Network which includes  information on our hosting of the 4th European Sensory Integration Congress (ESIC) 2015 and our campaign for the withdrawal of the recently published COT professional practice briefing on Sensory Integration.
    • An article on the history of Sensory Integration in Ireland by Dr Helen Lynch
    • An update from the SI Network Conference and Events Team about their attendance at the 50th Anniversary of the Association of Occupational Therapists of Ireland
    • An Interview with Valerie Cribbin, an Irish Occupational Therapist, regarding her pioneering contribution to SI in Ireland
    • An article review on a study which examined sensory processing patterns, activity choices and participation of children with autism in Ireland.
    • The ESIC 2015 Programme summary
    • An update from Professor Roseann Schaaf on why this year’s ESIC 2015 should not be missed
    • Information on the launch of the book “Life Changing Learning through Sensory Integration”
    • Dr. Greg Kelly (Ulster University) gives us an insight into forty years of Sensory Integration in the British Journal of Occupational Therapy in part one of this series
    • Dr Joanne Fallon, OT for Enable Ireland, provides a literature review on publications related to SI in the first half of 2015.
    • Two parents share their course feedback

    Remember that the easy click-on links in the newsletter will put you directly in touch with the editorial team and we welcome feedback and ideas for future editions.

    Kind regards

    The Sensory Integration Network Editorial Team

  • 31 Jul 2015 10:30 | SIE Support (Administrator)

    Don't miss out on our Early Bird offers for ESIC 2015 which end today.

    Book your place here.

  • 10 Jul 2015 02:04 | SIE Support (Administrator)

    Due to popular demand, we have now scheduled an additional SI Module course this year  - 12-16 October in Birmingham.

    More information and booking here

  • 08 Jul 2015 09:01 | SIE Support (Administrator)

    The Clinician's Guide for Implementing Ayres Sensory Integration: Promoting Participation for Children With Autism, is now available to purchase from the UK.

    Authors: Roseann C. Schaaf and Zoe Mailloux 

    The price is £79.50 and includes free worldwide delivery. Order online here.

    It describes the most effective, evidence-based way to implement ASI into clinical practice by using a data-driven decision-making approach. Practical information guides practitioners in methodologically understanding the child and creating effective interventions with measurable outcomes. Forms and case examples throughout allow readers to efficiently apply ASI in paediatric practice.

    ESIC 2015 Workshop: Introduction to Ayres SI Guidebook for Children with Autism on 10 September 2015

    You can also attend the ESIC 2015 Workshop: Introduction to Ayres SI Guidebook for Children with Autism on 10 September 2015 delivered by Professor Roseann Schaaf and Dr Zoe Mailloux.

    This one day course will provide an introduction to the Promoting Participation for Children with Autism: A Clinician’s Guide for Implementing Ayres Sensory Integration®(ASI). Course content and activities will introduce the participants to the application of Data Driven Decision Making (DDDM) in ASI by providing an overview of key procedures. We will focus on developing and implementing ASI for children with Autism and identification and measurement of outcomes. Participants will:

    • Learn about Promoting Participation for Children with Autism: A Clinician’s Guide for Implementing Ayres Sensory Integration®
    • Have a basic understanding of the procedures for implementing DDDM in ASI for children with autism, based on the randomized control trial upon which this guidebook is based
    • Understand how to identify and measure proximal and distal outcomes in the DDDM process.
    • Utilize the resources in the guidebook to plan individually-tailored, sensory motor activities designed to foster participation in children with autism.
    Date: 10th September 2015. 9am to 4.15pm

    Fee: £185 (Save £30 if booked with a place at ESIC 2015.)

    Venue: Conference Aston, Aston University, Birmingham, UK

    More information and online booking.


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