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University of Southern California
University of Southern California
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
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News and Events

Latest Chan Division News

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New study shows children with autism have less activity in brain region that observes, simulates movements ⟩
January 28, 2021

Autism Faculty Research Students

Team of USC and UCLA researchers first to pinpoint reduced frontal lobe activity, helping explain some social characteristics unique to autism.

By Mike McNulty A brain region responsible for processing visual observations of others’ movements then mapping those movements upon one’s own body schema is significantly less activated in children with autism spectrum disorder, compared to typically-developing children and to children with…

PhD student Dominique Como earns NIH fellowship ⟩
August 17, 2020

Awards Research Students

$92K award to support oral health care disparities research and training

In July, USC Chan occupational science PhD student Dominique Como ’21 received a National Institutes of Health Ruth L. Kirschstein Predoctoral Individual National Research Service Award. Commonly referred to as a F31 award, the two-year fellowship funded by the National Institute of Dental and…

A trio of faculty members explore how VR can help combat neurological diseases ⟩
August 4, 2020

Chan in the Media Faculty Health and Wellness Research

USC’s Sook-Lei Liew, Judy Pa and James M. Finley are researching the benefits of virtual reality for patients with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease or stroke.

By Chandrea Miller / USC News From left, Sook-Lei Liew, James M. Finley and Judy Pa in the USC SMART-VR Center. (Photo courtesy of Sook-Lei Liew) They've been called one of the most junior teams to lead such a high-profile USC collaboration. "I'm not sure if this is good or bad," said Sook-Lei Liew…

Neonatal therapy expert joins USC Chan faculty ⟩
July 13, 2020

Clinical Faculty Research

Certified Neonatal Therapist and research scientist Bobbi Pineda studies high-risk and premature infants and their families in the NICU.

By Mike McNulty Assistant Professor Bobbi Pineda Every year in the U.S., approximately 500,000 babies are born before reaching 37 weeks of pregnancy. The earlier the gestational age, the higher are the risks to the infant, including disability and mortality. "Just being born early changes brain…

USC-designed smartphone app aims to get older adults “Moving Up” ⟩
June 3, 2020

Chan in the Media Clinical Faculty Health and Wellness Research

Less than 10% of people aged 65 and up meet the national guidelines for physical activity. USC researchers are seeking to increase this figure through Moving Up, a mobile phone app geared toward older adults.

By Rishbha Bhagi / USC Viterbi School of Engineering Stacey Schepens Niemiec has long been passionate about using technology to improve the health and wellness of older adults. She became concerned with the widening of a “digital divide” among older adults that was limiting their access to…

Smart squad ⟩
May 11, 2020

Chan in the Media Community and Partners Faculty Research

By Chandrea Miller / USC Provost They've been called one of the most junior teams to lead a USC collaboration fund center — they, as in, Dr. James M. Finley, Assistant Professor, USC Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy, Dr. Judy Pa and Dr. Sook-Lei Liew, both, Assistant Professors,…

Video: Intelligent desk that promotes office worker health, wellness and productivity ⟩
November 21, 2019

Faculty Health and Wellness Research

When you think of an intelligent machine, what comes to mind? Associate Professor Shawn Roll, co-principal investigator of the "Coadaptation of Intelligent Office Desks and Human Users to Promote Worker Productivity, Health and Wellness" study, helps explain the future of intelligent workspaces in…

Shawn Roll named Fellow of the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine ⟩
November 15, 2019

Associations and Bodies Awards Faculty Research

The honor recognizes Roll's scholarly contributions to advancing sonography beyond traditional medical uses.

Shawn Roll, PhD in Occupational Science program director and associate professor PhD in Occupational Science Program Director and Associate Professor Shawn Roll has been named a Fellow of the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine. Fewer than 3 percent of AIUM members — a multidisciplinary…

USC study shows occupational therapy helps diabetes patients make lifestyle changes that can prevent serious health complications ⟩
November 8, 2019

Chan in the Media Community and Partners Faculty Lifestyle Redesign Research

The pilot study is the first to be completed under a novel academic-government collaboration between the SC CTSI, the UCLA CTSI, and the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services

By Paul Karon / SC CTSI Associate Professor Beth Pyatak A USC pilot study has indicated that an occupational therapy intervention can help diabetes patients make the kind of important and long-lasting lifestyle changes that have the potential to substantially improve their health and prevent serious…

Schepens Niemiec selected for NIH-funded program to reduce Alzheimer’s-related disparities ⟩
October 24, 2019

Associations and Bodies Awards Community and Partners Faculty Research

In partnership with USC Roybal Institute on Aging, program accelerates innovative research by junior scientists

By Mike McNulty Stacey Schepens Niemiec, assistant professor of research Assistant Professor of Research Stacey Schepens Niemiec Postdoc ’13 has been selected to participate in a scientific training program funded by the National Institutes of Health that supports junior scientists to develop…

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