Barbara M. Doucet, PhD, LOTR
NEUROPLASTICITY AND THE THERAPIST'S BRAIN:
DISCOVERING OUR ALTERNATE PATHWAYS
Neuroscience evidence is currently revealing that some of the most effective and successful outcomes can be achieved when the alternate, rather than the common, cortical pathways are activated in the brain. We will focus on therapists going down perhaps unfamiliar and unconventional roads, challenging how we think and act regarding critical issues such as scholarly activity, task-based assessments, and innovative therapy solutions for evidence-based practice. Current neuroscience evidence suggests that as occupational therapists, when we actuate underutilized, atypical skills and talents, unlimited potential can emerge, facilitating excellence in clinical practice, development of scholarship, and advancement of the profession.
Barbara M. Doucet, PhD, LOTR is a clinical researcher and educator, as well as a registered occupational therapist with over 30 years of clinical experience, primarily with the adult stroke population. She is currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Occupational Therapy within the Louisiana State University Health New Orleans (LSUHNO) School of Allied Health. She earned both her Bachelor of Science degree in Occupational Therapy and her Master of Health Sciences degree from LSUHNO. She received her doctoral degree in Human Movement Science from The University of Texas at Austin, where her focus was neuromuscular physiology. Dr. Doucet has held both clinical and administrative roles at several healthcare facilities in Louisiana and Texas and has previously served as academic faculty at The University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) in Galveston, and The University of Texas at Austin.
She is involved in research related to methods that facilitate recovery of motor control in the upper extremity in chronic stroke and how this physiological recovery translates to changes in occupational performance. She is also interested in the use of neuromuscular electrical stimulation (NMES) with this patient population; her work investigates optimal parameters of NMES and the adjunct treatment regimens used along with NMES that facilitate recovery of paralyzed muscle tissue that can lead to improved function. Additionally, her work extends into how NMES can be used in other healthy or pathological populations such as the brain injured and the elderly to promote muscle health and recovery, restore occupational performance, and maximize functional abilities in daily activities.
She has published numerous research and scholarly articles in journals that include Muscle & Nerve, The Journal of Electromyography & Kinesiology, Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine, Topics in Stroke Rehabilitation, American Journal of Occupational Therapy, Journal of Hand Therapy, Journal of Allied Health, and Clinical Translational Science. Currently, she is an Associate Editor for The American Journal of Occupational Therapy.
Dr. Doucet has been the recipient of federal, intramural, and foundation grants to support her work. She received a Mary Switzer Individual Fellowship from the National Institute of Disability & Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR) in 2012-2013 to study the effects of a novel neuromechanical treatment regimen; she was a scholar on an NIH K12 training grant as part of UTMB’s Rehabilitation Research Career Development Program that allowed her to develop and pursue an independent line of research; she conceptualized and organized an award-winning education-based, student-run free post-stroke clinic staffed by students and faculty at both UTMB and LSUHNO, and also received funding to study stroke recovery in skilled nursing facility residents through the Moody Endowment of Galveston. Since starting her career at LSUHNO in 2014, she has received two intramural grants and continues to pursue additional federal funding.
She recently received one of the highest honors in the LSUHNO School of Allied Health being named the Allen A. Copping Award winner for teaching excellence. Dr. Doucet was also selected as the 2015 Senior Day Mentor for the Department of Occupational Therapy at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) in Galveston. She has been active in state professional organizations throughout her career, serving as President, Vice-President, Education Chair, and Standards & Practice Chair of the Louisiana Occupational Therapy Association. She and her 9-year old golden retriever, Jack, are members of the New Orleans Visiting Pet Partner organization and visit nursing home residents monthly.
Dr. Doucet is in constant pursuit of excellence in education, scholarly activities and research, and in advancement of the occupational therapy profession. She currently resides in the New Orleans area with her husband of 15 years, Jodie.
About the Vanderkooi Endowed Lectureship
The Vanderkooi Endowed Lectureship was established in 1994 to honor the first program director of occupational therapy at Texas Woman’s University, Fanny B. Vanderkooi. It celebrates the School of Occupational Therapy’s legacy of commitment to vision, professional values, and leadership development in occupational therapy education, practice and research. The 2014 event was attended by 295 occupational therapy professionals, inclusive of students.
Community Building Workshops
|Roland & Virginia Chandler Dykes||Regina Michael Campbell, Chairperson||Noralyn Pickens|
|George & Grace Gilkeson||Virginia Chandler Dykes||Tina Fletcher|
|Bonnie Strauss||Lucy Aguirre-Kelley||Claudette Fette|
|Monica Bosman||Summer Oleson|
|Thomas Halka||Arwen Beckinger (PTE rep)|
|Heather McBride||Morelle Cummins (PTE rep)|
|Belinda Williams||Paige Brassart|
|Catherine Candler||Tomeka Nolen|
|Adele Polk (Emeritus)|
|Bonnie Strauss (Emeritus)|
Previous Vanderkooi Lecturers
1994 Lela Llorens, PhD, OTR
2005 Jim Hinojosa, PhD
Friends of Occupational Therapy Participants
page last updated 11/24/2015 2:19 PM