Saturday, December 31, 2011

iOS app review: iCouch CBT

Some time ago, I was asked to look into a new CBT app called iCouch CBT. I was immediately seduced by the graphical interface and the ability to password protect sensitive information. To my knowledge, this is the first psychology app that offers a feature to protect a client's right to privacy.  The app also provides an overview of CBT, which is useful for clients who want to understand the philosophy behind the technique. The interface is free of clutter and a home button makes it easy to return to the home page.

When the person using the app is faced with an anxiety provoking situation, he or she can document the event by clicking on "what happened". This person will then be asked to describe his or her negative thought and rate the felt emotion(s). The next step involves describing the cognitive distortion(s) (e.g. mental filter, should-be statements, blaming etc.), and input "a better thought" and a more adaptive behaviour.  The client is then prompted to reassess his or her thoughts and feelings. Another wonderful feature of the app is its ability to save and email logs. This can provide valuable information to the therapist who can track the number of incidences and their intensities over time.

Have you tried this app in your practice? What are your thoughts?
You can download the app here for $1.99 [link]

Sylvain Roy, Ph.D.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Voice Actions for iOS and Android: Not the new Siri, but the next best thing

Need an app that can control your phone through speech commands? Both Voice actions and Siri are powered by Nuance, the company that brought us Dragon Dictate. This app will be extremely useful for clients who have trouble writing email or navigating the touch screen. In fact, it can search for music and locations, set alarms, send text messages and search the web. I plan to recommend the app to clients. I'll report back later to let people know how it was received by individuals with acquired brain injury. I don't recommend dictating any confidential information as the information is processed on the Nuance servers.

You can download the app here for $4.99 [link]
Here is a  youtube video on it [link]

Sylvain Roy, Ph.D.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Android App Review: Cognitive remediation for working memory

If you have a patient with working memory or attention deficits, this app could be a very useful tool to use with him or her. The “Memory Trainer” android app focuses on working memory, spatial span and selective attention. Training is encompassed in six different exercises. One exercise involves generating a ToDo lists with full length sentences. The patient is then asked to remember parts of the sentences. The exercise is thus very ecological and potentially generalizable to real life.
You can choose to do a progressive training over 20 sessions or decide your activity and difficulty level. The app will log your session performance and plot it on a graph. This graph can be useful for the neuropsychologist wanting to follow-up on the client's progress, to confront them on their limitations or motivate them if needed.
The app, created by Urbian Inc, will also offer tips on ways to improve memory. For example, chunking information together, creating imagery, recommending healthy life styles, etc. Finally, the app also gives some information about what is short term memory. And it’s free.
Jocelyn Morettini
Health Psychologist / Neuropsychologist
View Jocelyn Morettini's [LinkedIn] page


Hello everyone: I just updated the iOS app list for psychologists. Great new finds were added. Take a look and let us know if we're missing an app.

Please share the list with your colleagues.

Sylvain Roy, Ph.D.