Department of Physical Therapy
Office Address: HHSB 242
Dr. McPherson joined the Department of Physical Therapy in fall 1999 as associate professor in motor behavior. Prior to this appointment, she was director of the graduate program in Health and Human Performance at WCU (1992-1999). She was former director of the Motor Behavior Laboratory at the University of Oklahoma, Norman, OK, from 1988 to 1992. Dr. McPherson has received several awards for her line of research in motor behavior including the Alumni Association Outstanding Dissertation Award (1987) in the College of Education of LSU. Also, in 2005 she was invited by the Research Consortium of the American Alliance of Health and Physical Education (AAHPERD) to deliver the “Scholar Lecture” summarizing her line of research in sport science. In addition, Dr. McPherson has played an active role in several national societies such as serving as chair of the Motor Development and Learning Academy for AAHPERD and has served on several committees for the North American Society of Sport and Physical Activity (NASPSPA). Finally, she has made numerous national presentations with several faculty and students in the Department of Physical Therapy at the Combined Sections and NEXT meetings for the American Physical Therapy Association.
Primary Teaching Responsibilities
Dr. McPherson teaches Motor Behavior (PT 861), Research Methods and Statistics (i.e., PT 841, PT 842, PT 843, PT 844), and directs a doctoral project (PT 899) in the Physical Therapy Department. She also consults with faculty and students in areas of research (e.g., design, statistical analysis, interpretation of results) and scientific writing.
Areas of Research Interest
Dr. McPherson is currently examining the nature and impact of injury prevention programs designed to train individuals to activate their transversus abdominis (TrA) during upright loaded functional tasks (with Dr. Todd Watson). She is also developing a line of research that examines the impact of various types of attentional focus instructions and/or feedback on performance and learning of adults post-stroke during seated balance and gait training tasks (with Dr. Ashley Hyatt).
Recent National Presentations
Dr. McPherson resides in Asheville, NC, and her hobbies include golf, fly fishing, kayaking, and scuba diving.