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Mary Butler’s Inaugural Professorial Lecture

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The Hub, Otago Polytechnic

95 Forth Street

Dunedin, Otago 9016

New Zealand

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Vision 2020: Community collaborations and wild possibilities

About this Event

Prof Mary Butler describes an occupational odyssey through engagement in research, advocacy, education and health care. Underpinning this is a steady commitment to community collaborations and to ways of knowing that are informed by occupation.

In recent years she has explored sustainable approaches to social and physical accessibility for people who have problems with vision loss across the lifespan. Currently, her research is focused on addressing the lack of mandatory vision screening in Aotearoa/New Zealand, and the ways that this can impact on learning, sports and social interactions for children.

Mary’s students came up with the concept of child-to-child vision screening, where the children learn about fair testing while screening each other. This has been developed into a toolkit through a co-design process with teachers, children, optometrists, occupational therapists and product designers. The toolkit has been embedded into a “Vision Health Module” that teaches the children about vision through the lens of science, health and philosophy.

The aim is to work with children and their families and teachers in such a way that the link between health and occupation becomes obvious through subtle means. Mary wants the children to explore the wild possibilities implicit in activities and thoughts that are enabled by vision. Using spectacles when they are needed without any feelings of stigma would be one of the outcomes, but the more important ones are messages about wonder and inclusivity that she hopes the children will learn.

Mary Butler is a Professor of Occupational Therapy in the College of Health at Otago Polytechnic.

Register by: Tuesday 24 March 2020

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Date and Time

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The Hub, Otago Polytechnic

95 Forth Street

Dunedin, Otago 9016

New Zealand

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