The Off-site Level 1 course, Clinical Reasoning in Intervention, is conducted in sessions of 4 consecutive days (typically Thursday-Sunday).
Working in a group setting (15-25), participants of STAR Institute’s Off-site Level 1 Intensive learn to apply clinical reasoning through lectures, video treatment observation and analysis with experienced STAR faculty.
- Observe children in videotaped 1:1 therapy with experienced STAR Institute Treatment Center therapists using combined occupational therapy (OT) and listening therapy (LT).
- Receive group processing/supervision guided by faculty level clinicians from the STAR Institute.
- Learn about the newest assessment tools for the SPD population.
- Opportunity for small group discussions specific to practice areas.
Level 1 Intensive Program Objectives
The objective of STAR Institute's Level 1 Intensive program is to provide participants with a basic understanding of the latest research in SPD and the ability to:
- Differentiate subtypes of SPD.
- Utilize clinical reasoning tools for intervention and home adaptation developed by Dr. Lucy Jane Miller and Dr. Sarah A. Schoen.
- Recognize and develop realistic and functional goals using Goal Attainment Scaling.
- Recognize the importance of engaging families in the treatment process.
- Become familiar with appropriate tools to evaluate children with SPD.
- Observe client session videos, analyze through clinical reasoning, and discuss treatment planning.
- Become familiar with the STAR PROCESS Model for treatment.
- Address family needs and desires.
- Synthesize information in an OT assessment, write treatment notes using STAR’s clinical reasoning approach, communicate effectively with physicians and other members of a client’s team.
Lucy Jane Miller, PhD, OTR/L
Founder, STAR Institute
Dr. Miller brings a wealth of research and treatment experience to share with participants, having authored more than 75 articles and two books about SPD and sensory issues. Her nine norm-referenced scales include: Miller Assessment for Preschoolers, Japanese Miller Assessment for Preschoolers, First STEP, Primer Paso, Toddler and Infant Motor Evaluation, Leiter International Performance Scale-Revised, Stoelting-Brief Intelligence Scale, Short Sensory Profile, Miller Function and Participation scale, the Goal-Oriented Assessment of Life-Skills and the Sensory Processing Three Dimensions (SP-3D). She has received the Award of Merit, the highest award given by the American Occupational Therapy Foundation, and the Martin Luther King Jr., Humanitarian Award by the State of Colorado.
Sarah A. Schoen, PhD, OTR/L
Director of Research, STAR Institute
Dr. Schoen is an occupational therapist with 30 years of clinical experience and a doctorate in occupational therapy from New York University (2001). She completed a two-year post-doctoral fellowship awarded by the Developmental Psychobiology Research Group at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center, Department of Psychiatry, working with Dr. Lucy Jane Miller. During her fellowship, she was awarded the Developmental Psychology Endowment Grant from the William T. Grant foundation to study the Sensory Processing Scales, which she is co-developing and researching with Dr. Miller. Dr. Schoen is currently an Associate Professor at the Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions and has served on multiple doctoral committees. She also co-developed and teaches the monthly Advanced Mentorship trainings at STAR Institute. She is certified in Neurodevelopmental Treatment and has advanced training in Sensory Integration Therapy, Therapeutic Listening, and assistive technology. Dr. Schoen received the Recognition of Achievement Award from the American Occupational Therapy Association in 1997 and the Virginia Scardina Award of Excellence from the American Occupational Therapy Foundation in 2011.
Primary Level 1 Mentorship Faculty
Renee Allen, MS, OTR/L
Faculty, STAR Institute
Renee has practiced pediatric occupational therapy since receiving her Master’s Degree from Boston University in 2000. Her professional experiences include working in Early Intervention, working with the deaf/blind student population at Perkin’s School for the Blind in Boston, and providing treatment in two private sensory-focused clinics. She provided clinical treatment at the STAR Institute from 2008-2011. Currently, Renee owns a private practice providing OT to children 0-6 years in their homes or in her private clinic. She is Sensory Integration and Praxis Test (SIPT) certified, and holds an intermediate level certification in the DIR /Floortime Model. She spends her free time hiking, skiing and enjoying Colorado with her husband and two children.
Robyn C. Chu, MOT, OTR/L
Faculty, STAR Institute
Robyn is founder and director of Growing Healthy Children Therapy Services, located in El Dorado County, California. Mrs. Chu brings over 11 years of diverse clinical experience and a passion for helping others. Mrs. Chu began her career at Shriners Hospital for Children in Sacramento, and later became the Lead Occupational Therapist for the El Dorado County Office of Education. She has advanced training in Sensory Integration Therapy, completing mentorships and fellowships with Dr. Lucy Jane Miller at STAR Institute in Colorado. Mrs. Chu has spent the last 8 years of her career dedicated to growing her private practice, which is now includes a state-of-the-art, multi-disciplinary therapy practice nestled on 3.5 acres in the Sierra Nevada Foothills and a satellite location in Davis. Mrs. Chu has also serves as a Private Practice Consultant, supporting other growing therapy practices. As the director of Growing Healthy Children, Mrs. Chu has supported many families from around the world and mentored therapists across California. Over the years, Mrs. Chu has taught workshops to parents, teachers, and therapists and has guest-lectured at universities. She is currently on the faculty for the SPD Foundation. She helped standardize the Miller Functional and Participation Scales, the GOAL assessment, and is now working on the SP3D. Mrs. Chu also serves as a consultant for research teams at UCSF and Stanford. Mrs. Chu recently published a set of 10 Sensory Motor Activity Books to support families and therapists around the world. She also developed “The Gardening Game: A Learn and Grow Kit for OT” in order to encourage motor development and social skills.
Michele Parkins, MS, OTR
Faculty, STAR Institute
Michele Parkins is an Occupational Therapist specializing in working with children and families with Sensory Processing and Integration Disorder and challenges in social emotional development at her practice Great Kids Place in New Jersey. Michele is faculty of STAR (Sensory Therapies and Research) Institute. She is also SIPT certified. Michele advocates for all children and families impacted by Sensory Processing and Integration Disorder to help them and others to understand the impact of this disorder on social emotional functioning. She has embarked on a journey to learn more to support children and families by engaging in Certification in Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health at Montclair State University. She is DIR certified and is faculty of Profectum Foundation where she educates therapists all over the world on social-emotional development and the DIR model. Continuing her advocacy work, Michele is very active on social media and blogs about the impact of sensory processing challenges on regulation, relationships, and social emotional capacities. She also works with local schools and communities to create spaces for sensory lifestyles so all kids can benefit from enhanced sensory motor experiences. Michele is also a mother of two children with sensory processing differences. She uses her real life experiences to help her clients better understand the impact of SPD on family dynamics and relationships and the day to day demands of life with sensory processing differences.
Mim Ochsenbein, MSW, OTR/L
Director of Education & Occupational Therapist, STAR Institute for SPD
Mim Ochsenbein, MSW, OTR/L has been a practicing pediatric occupational therapist for over 20 years. She received advanced training in sensory integration (SIPT certification), listening therapy (Therapeutic Listening), feeding therapy (SOS) and infant massage (CIMI). Mim’s work with children and youth has occurred in a variety of settings including early intervention, school based, clinic based, mental health and private practice. She received her MSW in 2012 with an emphasis in non-profit management. Mim’s work as a social worker has included case management, program development, and program management. She has taught both graduate level and professional continuing education courses since 2013.
Lisa Porter, MOT, OTR/L
Faculty, STAR Institute
Lisa graduated from Rockhurst University in 1994 with a master’s degree in Occupational Therapy. She is a fellow of STAR Institute, traveling to Denver from Portland 2-3 times each year to mentor experienced therapists. Lisa is currently working on her PhD in Pediatric Science at Rocky Mountain University of Health Professions. She is passionate about sharing what she learns and constantly improving services at her pediatric therapy clinic, Sensory KIDS. Lisa specializes in sensory and relationship-based therapy, and has advanced training in Stanley Greenspan’s DIR/Floortime model. She is trained in the Sensory Integration and Praxis Test (SIPT), the SOS Feeding Approach, and is an advanced Integrated Listening Systems practitioner. Lisa is passionate about building relationships with her clients & families, as well as treating children from a developmental frame of reference. She is thrilled to be creating a team that specializes in sensory challenges, and recognizes how they impact the function of children and families.
Virginia Spielmann, MSOT
Associate Director/Faculty, STAR Institute
Virginia is a well-travelled speaker, coach and educator on topics including sensory integration, DIR/Floortime, child development and infant mental health. She has conducted trainings in Kenya, Australia, the Philippines, Vietnam, Hong Kong, and the USA and leads workshops at international conferences.
Virginia is a founder and former Clinical Director of SPOT (Speech, Physical, and Occupational Therapy) Interdisciplinary Children's Therapy Center in Hong Kong, where she led a large and widely respected inter-disciplinary team.
Virginia obtained her BSc in Occupational Therapy in Oxford England (2002) and her Masters in Occupational Therapy from Mount Mary University, Milwaukee (2018). She is a DIR/Floortime Training Leader and Expert and clinical consultant for the Interdisciplinary Council for Development and Learning (ICDL). Her extensive pediatric experience includes children on the autism spectrum, as well as those with Sensory Processing Disorder, infant mental health issues, children from adopted families and those who have experienced developmental trauma.
Virginia has considerable post-graduate training, she is certified on the SIPT and is currently completing her Ph.D. in Infant and Early Childhood Development with an emphasis on mental health, with Fielding Graduate University, in Santa Barbara.
Off-Site Level 1 Intensive (four-day program) is $1675 per person, including a $265 deposit upon application.
Applicants for this program must submit an application form and attach a current CV or resume, including a list of recent relevant Continuing Education courses completed. There is a non-refundable deposit of $265 (applicable toward tuition). For those accepted into the mentorship program, this fee is not refundable should you cancel your registration. However, if for any reason we are unable to accept your application your deposit will be fully refunded.
Who Should Attend
This program is designed primarily for occupational therapists at all levels to enhance diagnostic and clinical reasoning skills. Other providers are also welcome to apply (no CEUs will be awarded for attendance). Applicants must currently work with children with Sensory Processing Disorder. Applicants must provide a copy of a recent CV or resume detailing specific SPD work experience and training. Courses will be limited to 25 participants. A minimum of two years’ pediatric experience is preferred.
STAR Institute Credentials
STAR Institute awards competency credentials to participants who demonstrate proficiency at each individual course level. Participants receive credential certificates documenting completion of the specialized training in SPD.
Continuing Education Units (CEUs)
STAR Institute is an AOTA Approved Provider of continuing education. Approximately 25.5 Professional Contact Hours (2.55 CEUs) are awarded for full completion of a Level 1 Intensive Mentorship program. The assignment of AOTA CEUs does not imply endorsement of specific course content, products, or clinical procedures by AOTA.
Co-hosting an Off-site Level 1 Intensive Program
Off-site Level 1 Intensive Programs may be co-hosted by large clinics or those with the means to secure an adequate venue for 15-25 participants. Off-site Level 1 Mentorship programs are typically scheduled at least one year in advance, depending on the location and faculty availability.