Nicole Dawson, PT, PhD, GCS is an Assistant Professor in the Doctor of Physical Therapy Program at the University of Central Florida and Co-Director of the Innovative Mobility Innovative (IMOVE™) Lab. She graduated from Ohio University with a Master’s degree in Physical Therapy in 2002. Dr. Dawson is a Board Certified Geriatric Physical Therapist with over 15 years of clinical experience along with a PhD in Adult Development & Aging Psychology. Her current area of research includes developing non-pharmacological interventions to improve functional and psychosocial outcomes in patients with dementia, identifying predictors of falls in older adults with cognitive impairment, as well as gaining a better understanding of the illness experience of individuals with dementia. Dr. Dawson has been published in peer-reviewed journals including The Gerontologist and the Journal of Geriatric Physical Therapy. She has presented at numerous international and national conferences on the subject. She is passionate about the bettering the treatment and care of these patients and is dedicated to assisting students and clinicians in gaining skills and knowledge to better help these patients maximize their potential.
- BS, Bachelor of Science, Sports Medicine, Baldwin-Wallace College
- MA, Master of Arts, Adult Development & Aging Psychology, Cleveland State University
- MPT, Master of Physical Therapy, Ohio University
- PT, Licensed Physical Therapist
- Ph.D., Doctor of Philosophy, Adult Development & Aging Psychology, Cleveland State University
- GCS, Board-Certified Clinical Specialist in Geriatric Physical Therapy
- Development, implementation, and evaluation of non-pharmacological interventions for older adults (specializing in individuals with dementia)
- Gaining a better understanding of the illness experience for older adults with chronic illness, specifically those with dementia, through a biopsychosocial approach
- Training and development of the growing eldercare workforce
- Identifying risk factors for falls in older adults with and without cognitive impairment
- Studying predictors of successful and optimal aging
Areas of Specialty
- Non-pharmacological interventions for older adults
- Predictors of successful and optimal aging
- Risk factors for falls in older adults with cognitive impairment
- Understanding the illness experience for individuals with dementia
Research Lab Affiliations
PHT7521C: Management of PT Services II
PHT7789C: Advanced Geriatric PT
PHT6521: Management of PT Services
PHT6374C: Geriatric PT
PHT5003: Foundations of PT
PHT5125L: Clinical Kinesiology Lab
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