La Trobe speech pathologist, Dr Marcella Carragher, chose a PhD thesis that explored designing various interventions to improve the conversational skills of individuals with aphasia. Within her PhD, Dr Carragher developed a novel approach that supported individuals with aphasia to practise telling a humorous or interesting story to a family member. The family member was a key part of the therapy – they learnt how to work with the individual with aphasia to co-construct the story.
It was this published work that would capture the attention of Professor Jane Marshall at City University of London, whose team had developed an interactive virtual world, something akin to a tropical island getaway. They called it Eva Park. We sat down with Dr Carragher, a member of La Trobe University’s Aphasia Lab, to explore this virtual reality platform.