In her 29 years in the CSU-OT Department, Pat Sample has maintained a long-term interest in services and service access for children and adults with disabilities, primarily those with traumatic brain injury (TBI). Other research interests of Dr. Sample include qualitative research; research methods; and more recently – TBI screening tool development. Her primary research area is focused on children and adults with TBI: screening and identification of TBI, service needs, service access, and life outcomes. Over a number of years Pat and her research partners have developed and tested the Brain Check Survey, a screening tool to help identify struggling school students who may have an unidentified traumatic brain injury. Information about the TBI research studies that have emerged from Dr. Sample and her research team members over the years, as well as access to the Brain Check Survey and its Scoring Instructions can be found on the Long-Term Outcomes after Brain Injury (LOBI) website: http://www.lobi.chhs.colostate.edu/research.aspx. Earlier research foci of Pat’s included transition from school to adult life for youth with disabilities, and participatory action research (PAR) to assist persons with disabilities in answering research questions of importance to them. Funding agencies that have awarded grants to support Pat’s research include: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; U.S. Department of Education – NIDRR, Office of Special Education Programs, Office of Special Education and Rehabilitation Services, and Rehabilitation Services Administration; Colorado Traumatic Brain Injury Trust Fund Research Program; and the Colorado Department of Public Health and the Environment. Pat has had her research published in such journals as Brain Injury, Journal of Head Trauma Rehabilitation, American Journal of Occupational Therapy, Occupational Therapy in Health Care, Physical and Occupational Therapy in Geriatrics, Epilepsy & Behavior, and Behavioral Disorder.
Prior to being hired onto the OT Department faculty, Dr. Sample was the co-Director of the Center for Community Partnerships (CCP), which is a major service and research arm the CSU OT Department. In 2005, Pat received her PhD in occupational/vocational education – special needs emphasis, from the School of Education at CSU.
Aside from her research activities, Pat currently teaches OT 620 and 640 – Research to Practice I & II, OT 631 – Program Assessment and Planning, and OT 792 – Doctoral Seminar; advises MS thesis and PhD students; chairs the OT Tenure and Promotion Committee; represents the OT Department on the CHHS Tenure and Promotion Advisory Committee;, serves on the OT Department Code Committee; is a long-term member of the OT Department Ad-Hoc Nominations Committee; and in the Spring of 2017 is the Chair of the Search Committee for a new Director of the Center for Community Partnerships, which is at the Associate Professor or Professor level.