​​DPT Chair Presents Research at Alabama OT Conference

News Date
susan denham

By Hazel Scott

Dr. Susan Denham, department chair and professor of the Occupational Therapy Department, was selected to present her research at the Alabama Occupational Therapy Association’s Fall conference.

Her research, “Sensory Room Utilization in Alabama Public Schools: Ideas and Concerns,” was completed as her capstone project with a group of graduating Master of Occupational Therapy students: Amber Hule, Lauren Cantrell and Hannah Phillips.

She hopes the takeaway from her presentation is a better understanding of sensory rooms and their potential when combined with skilled occupational therapy services.

"Sensory Rooms are a viable and potentially effective way to deal with sensory processing disorders in the school system; however, they cannot be used to substitute for the skilled services provided by pediatric occupational therapists. This research addressed the benefits and concerns occupational therapists and educators have regarding the increasing numbers of sensory rooms in our public schools," Denham said.

In her current research work, she is exploring shoulder, elbow, wrist, hand, digit and thumb dysfunction; hand therapy; industrial rehabilitation; ergonomics; prosthetics; and joint protection.

Denham, who has presented at multiple state and national conferences, has 31 years of experience as an Occupational Therapist and 21 years as an Occupational Therapy educator.  

In addition to teaching, Denham maintains a clinical practice in outpatient hand therapy and industrial rehabilitation. She is recognized as an expert witness in Alabama and Georgia for cases involving orthopedics, disability and impairment ratings.

Denham, an ASU alumna (2006), is in her 22nd year at ASU.