Tutorials

Video of Visual Attention TherAppy v1.0. The latest version may look and behave slightly differently.

Instructions

Test Mode: The test mode is designed to help clinicians/teachers evaluate a person’s scanning ability for both time and accuracy. Select the level(s) you want to complete and the number of targets (1 or 2), then press the forward arrow button. At the top of the screen, the target(s) will be displayed along with a clock. The clock will start when you first touch a letter/symbol in the playing area. Touch each target on the screen. When all targets have been found, the test will end. If the user is finished finding targets but has not found all of them, press the “Done” button at the top to end the test. Results can be e-mailed at the end of the test.

Practice Mode: The practice mode is designed to train users to scan in a left-to-right, top-to-bottom pattern. Practice can be completed with a solid or flashing red, yellow, green or blue line on the left or right side of the screen to help draw attention to that side for users with visual inattention. Select the level(s) you want to complete and the number of targets (1 or 2). In Practice mode, each target must be touched in sequence from left to right. The “incorrect” sound will be heard if a target is touched out of sequence, even if it is a correct target. All targets must be found to end the level. Press the “Skip” button to move to the next level before completing the current one. Results can be e-mailed at the end of any practice exercise.

Clock: The clock will start on each level once you start touching letters/symbols in the play area. Touch the clock to pause at any time. Touch the clock again to restart.   Pressing the “Home” button in the upper left corner will also pause the clock; press “Continue” to resume.

Levels: There are 10 levels, organized from easiest to hardest. The levels contain a combination of symbols and letters. Use symbols for users who do not read or are less comfortable with letters; use letters for readers.

Settings

Number of Trials at Each Level: Select 1-5 or 10 trials at each level of practice or testing.

Number of Lines: Select from “Fewest, Some, More, or Most” for the number of lines on the screen. The actual number will change based on the spacing of the stimuli. “Most” is the hardest setting.

Spacing: Select from “Small, Medium, or Large” spacing between stimuli. “Small” is the hardest setting.

Cancelled Targets: Select from a variety of visual markers to indicate targets have been found.

Signal: If using the “Right” or “Left” signal in Practice Mode, select the color of the signal.

Signal Flashing: Make the signal flash for a stronger pull of the user’s attention to the side of the screen.

Maximize Font: Increase the font size when “Spacing” is Medium or Large.

E-Mail Results To: Enter the address of the SLP, OT, or other person monitoring progress.

Deactivate Links: Turn this setting on to deactivate the links on the home screen.

Tips & Tricks

Are you using this app to its fullest potential? Do you know about every setting and feature? Take a few moments to read up on our tips for using the app better and tricks for getting more out of it. Then test your knowledge to see if you're aware of all the great things you can do with this app. If you have a tip or trick to share, please let us know!
• Use Visual Attention Therapy to assess and treat left neglect, right neglect, attention deficits, working memory impairments, slow speed of processing, initiation problems, and more. These deficits are common in people with right-sided strokes (R CVA), other strokes, dementia, brain injury (TBI), and other cognitive disorders.

• Unlike most of the other Tactus Therapy apps, Visual Attention Therapy works best when you don’t keep all the levels selected. Pick only the ones that challenge you sufficiently on the second screen (“Choose Your Levels”) to work at the perfect level for your needs.

• For users with severe attention problems, select the fewest lines, largest spacing, and Same Symbol or Same Letter level with only 1 target. This will focus on sustained attention.

• Start with a flashing signal to draw extra attention to the neglected side; this feature is only available in Visual Attention Therapy. Once the user has a high success rate, fade the signal to a solid color, then remove it altogether for better generalization. There are no colored lines on the sides of life!

• Take a screenshot after each trial to show the user where they missed items. Read more about this technique in this blog post.

• To target working memory, use 1 or 2 targets on a symbol level to work the visuo-spatial sketch pad or 2 targets on a letter level to work the phonological loop.

• E-mail reports to yourself after every session so you can easily track progress over time. Test reports auto-calculate which quadrant is most neglected and rank them in order. Put your e-mail address in the Settings for faster reporting.

• Increase difficulty by using more targets (adjust in the Settings), a harder level, 2 targets, or set a challenge to beat the previous time. There are so many ways to adjust this app!

• Change the color of the signal on the side of the Practice mode to match the color of the tape or lines you use for other areas of rehab. Choose between red, yellow, green, and blue in the latest update.

• Did you know that in Practice mode, you can’t move forward until you’ve found all the targets in order from left to right, top to bottom? That’s something paper exercises can’t do!

• Did you know you can increase the font size or keep it consistent when changing the number of lines? Find the Maximize Font option in the Settings.

• Did you know you can change the appearance of the cancelled targets? Pick the style the user can see best without being too distracted. There are now 5 options in the Cancelled Targets option in the Settings.

• Did you know the Number of Lines changes based on the Spacing in the Settings? This allows for the 12 different options with between 24 and 228 items on the screen.

• Did you know that cancellation exercises are the most evidence-based assessment and treatment technique for left neglect? Visual Attention Therapy makes it easy to detect visuospatial inattention when used as part of a complete cognitive assessment battery.

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