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PhD, Occupational Science: University of Southern California
MA, Bioethics and Health Policy: Loyola University Chicago
MA, Occupational Therapy: University of Southern California
BA, Education: Arizona State University 


Dr. McDonald arrived at CMU in the fall of 2018 and is leading the development of the occupational therapy doctorate (OTD) program. Prior to the program launch, you may find her teaching courses in Human Growth & Development, Wellness, Animal-Assisted Intervention, Early Childhood Special Education and the first of its kind Milestone Course: Play & Leisure Across the Lifespan.

Dr. McDonald has experience implementing team-based learning (TBLC). This student-centric, evidence-based approach to classroom teaching improves student participation and learning across an array of topics. The past two years she has received funding from the Daniels Fund Ethics Initiative to incorporate everyday ethics' topics into a variety of values-driven and ethics-focused learning activities.

Dr. McDonald is the past-chairperson of AOTA's Ethics Commission. She has presented at state, national and international professional conferences on topics related to healthcare research as well as practice-based issues in occupational therapy.

Her research interests include tele-health, population health, play and leisure as well as evidence-based teaching strategies in higher education.

When she is not immersed in developing the OTD program, Dr. McDonald spends time enjoying her family and the beauty of the Western Slope.

Special Certifications/Credentials

Credentialed Academic Leader (ALC)
American Occupational Therapy Association
Rockville, Maryland

Harvard Global Clinical Scholar Research Training Certificate
Harvard Medical School
Boston, Massachusetts

Registered and Licensed Occupational Therapist
State of Colorado
Registered and Licensed Occupational Therapist
State of California

Advanced Swallowing Certification (SWC)

Sensory Integration & Praxis Test (SIPT) Certification