Academy of Research In Occupational Therapy

AOREstablished in 1983, the AOTF Academy of Research in Occupational Therapy recognizes individuals who have made exemplary, distinguished, and sustained contributions toward the science of occupational therapy. Every year, the Academy of Research invites nominations for membership. After consideration of the nominations and supporting materials, the Academy selects individuals to be inducted into this distinguished body of researchers. Normally, inductions occur at the next AOTA Annual Conference and Exposition.  

View Nomination Procedures


View Presentations from the 2022 Academy of Research Inductees and 2022 Early & Mid-Career Awardees

View Presentations from the 2021 Academy of Research Inductees and 2021 Early & Mid-Career Awardees

2023 Inductees to the Academy

Sook-Lei Liew, PhD, OTR/L


Sook-Lei Liew, PhD, OTR/L

Dr. Liew is a tenured associate professor at the University of Southern California (USC) Mrs. T.H. Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy with joint appointments in the USC Division of Biokinesiology and Physical Therapy, the USC Department of Neurology within the Keck School of Medicine, and the USC Department of Biomedical Engineering within the Viterbi School of Engineering. Dr. Liew is also the Director of the Neural Plasticity and Neurorehabilitation Laboratory, member of the USC Stevens Neuroimaging and Informatics Institute, and a founder and co-director of the USC SensoriMotor Assessment and Rehabilitation Training in Virtual Reality (SMART-VR) Center. She is a registered and licensed occupational therapist specializing in adult neurology and physical disabilities, a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist® (CSCS), a Fellow of the American Heart Association Research Leaders Academy, and a Fellow of ReproNim/INCF Program jointly sponsored by the Center for Reproducible Neuroimaging Computation (ReproNim) and the International Neuroinformatics Coordinating Facility (INCF).

Carolyn A. Unsworth PhD, BAppSci(OccTher), GCTE, OTR, , MRCOT, FOTARA


Carolyn A. Unsworth PhD, BAppSci(OccTher), GCTE, OTR, , MRCOT, FOTARA

Professor Unsworth is Discipline Lead of Occupational Therapy at Federation University, and holds adjunct professorial appointments at Monash, and James Cook University in Australia, and Jönköping University in Sweden. Her research is supported by competitive grants from both government agencies and philanthropic organisations and focusses on promoting community transport mobility for people with disabilities including driver assessment and rehabilitation and public transport access. Carolyn’s research informs government fitness-to-drive guidelines and bus access policy. She is also known for her contributions to the fields of health outcome measurement and clinical reasoning. Her assessment tools, the Australian Therapy Outcome Measures (AusTOMs-OT) and Occupational Therapy Driver Off Road Assessment (OT-DORA) are used internationally. Carolyn is a supervisor of higher research degree students (PhD and Masters). She has published widely in leading journals such as the Journal of Transport and Health, Ageing and Society, and the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease.

Members of the Academy of Research

View Full List of Academy of Research Members At-A-Glance. * indicates a deceased member.

Ching-yi Wu, ScD, OTR
Helene Ross

Ching-yi Wu, ScD, OTR


Dr. Wu is a full professor in the Department of Occupational Therapy and the Graduate Institute of Behavioral Science in the College of Medicine at Chang Gung University in Taoyuan City, Taiwan with a practice appointment as Adjunct Occupational Therapist in Chang Gung University Hospital. Dr. Wu’s research interest mainly lies in neurorehabilitation after stroke and the application of motor control study in stroke rehabilitation, together with examining the psychometric and clinimetric properties of outcome evaluations used in efficacy study. She has combined electrophysiological stimulation with task-oriented approaches; for example, transcranial direct current stimulation combined with mirror therapy for facilitating neural reorganization and motor recovery. Dr. Wu’s research has used kinematic analysis and functional magnetic resonance imaging to study the nature of improved movement control and the possible neural mechanisms underlying improvement. Dr. Wu has published over 172 journal articles and is the Principle Investigator of the Human-Machine Interface in the Healthy Aging Center at Chang Gung University which facilitates the application of technology in rehabilitation and occupational therapy practice.


Identify three words that others have used to describe you.
Persistent, Action-oriented, Interdisciplinary

How do you hope to make a difference in the world through research?
I hope to make a difference in clinical practice in terms of optimizing the benefits of interventions for persons with physical dysfunction. Research on the mechanism and efficacy of theory-based and innovative interventions and on searching for the most appropriate clients to the specific approach is critical to achieve this aim. I also hope to make a difference in knowledge and practice by incorporating contemporary technology such as non-invasive brain stimulation, artificial intelligence to clinical decision making, monitoring, evaluation, and intervention of occupational therapy.

What is one piece of advice you have for individuals considering a career in science and research?
Be enthusiastic and interested in exploring unknown phenomenon.

Beside your own areas of inquiry, what is one research priority that you believe is important for the future of occupational science and occupational therapy?
Integrate artificial intelligence and telerehabilitation into OT knowledge and practice for health care and promotion.

Describe the most important role that mentors played in your professional journey.
I am fortunate to be surrounded by respectful scholars who are devoted to research and professional development. What I learned and I’d like to pass on to the young researcher or scholars is to sharpen your thinking and create all kinds of possibility for enriching the field of interest.

Identify a favorite occupation that renews you outside of your work.
Travel, cuisine, hiking

What has been the most surprising or rewarding aspects of a career in science and research? The most rewarding aspect is to mentor graduate students and postdoctoral fellows and collaborate with colleagues to go through a series of the research programs finding out the possible/temporary answers to the research question and contributing to establishment of the scientific base of occupational therapy.



Chen, H., Lin, K., Liing, R., Wu, C.-Y., & Chen, C.-L. (2015). Kinematic measures of arm-trunk movements during unilateral and bilateral reaching predict clinically important change in perceived arm use in daily activities after intensive stroke rehabilitation. Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation, 12, 84-94. doi:10.1186/s12984-015-0075-8.

Wu, C.-Y., Chen, C.-L., Tsai, W., Lin, K. (2007). A randomized controlled trial of modified constraint-induced movement therapy for elderly stroke survivors: Changes in motor impairment, daily functioning, and quality of life. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 88, 273-8. doi:10.1016/j.apmr.2006.11.021.

Wu, C.-Y., Chuang L-L., Lin K-C., Chen, H., & Tsay, P. (2011). Randomized trial of distributed constraint-induced therapy versus bilateral arm training for the rehabilitation of upper-limb Motor control and function after stroke. Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair, 25, 130-139. doi:10.1177/1545968310380686.

Wu, C-Y, Chuang L-L, Lin K-C, Lee S-D, & Hong W-H. (2011). Responsiveness, minimal detectable change, and minimal clinically important difference of the Nottingham Extended Activities of Daily Living scale in patients with improved performance after stroke rehabilitation. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 92, 1281-1287. doi:10.1016/j.apmr.2011.03.008.

Wu, C.-Y., Chuang, I.-C., Ma, H.-I., Lin, K.-C., & Chen, C.-L. (2016). Validity and responsiveness of the Revised Nottingham Sensation Assessment for outcome evaluation in stroke rehabilitation. American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 70, 7002290040. doi: 10.5014/ajot.2016.018390.

Wu, C.-Y., Lin K-C, Chen, H.-C., Chen, I.-H., & Hong, W.-H. (2007) Effects of Modified Constraint-Induced Movement Therapy on Movement Kinematics and Daily Function in Patients With Stroke: A Kinematic Study of Motor Control Mechanisms. Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair, 21, 460 doi:10.1177/1545968307303411

Wu, C.-Y., Wong, M., Lin, K., Chen, H.-C. (2001). Effects of task goal and personal preference on seated reaching kinematics after stroke. Stroke, 32, 70-76. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1161/01.STR.32.1.70.

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