Movement and Cognitive Rehabilitation Science

A woman on a treadmill in front of a simulated green screen environment

Photo of Lisa Griffin

Program Director
Lisa Griffin

Our Program

Movement and Cognitive Rehabilitation Science (MCRS) graduate programs combine the traditional fields of biomechanics, motor development, motor control, and learning, and cognitive and neuromuscular function. This program examines multidisciplinary aspects of how people move in a variety of settings, including clinical applications, elite performance, and typical changes related to development and aging. The MCRS curriculum is designed to support students interested in pursuing careers in research and the allied health sciences.

Students benefit from the diverse backgrounds and experience of the program faculty and their colleagues across the campus, including faculty collaborators in biology, engineering, medicine, neuroscience, and psychology.

Graduate Research Degrees

Our research-driven graduate degrees include doctoral (Ph.D.) and Master of Science (M.S.) programs that pair each student with a faculty mentor or supervisor to generate new knowledge and understanding in Movement and Cognitiive Rehabilitation Science.

Students in these programs carry out research studying biomechanical, neural, cognitive, and neuromuscular mechanisms of human movement. Our research has applications in development and aging, cognition, skill acquisition, and rehabilitation following acute or chronic injuries.

Students pursuing research-driven degrees are strongly encouraged to directly contact the professor(s) conducting research that matches their own research interests.

Masters Practical Applications Degree

We offer a practical Master of Education (M.Ed.) program designed to prepare students to work in clinical rehabilitation, sport science, and cognitive, motor learning, and development fields.

Each graduate student is assigned to a faculty advisor for guidance through the requirements of the chosen degree program to ensure optimal completion of required and elective coursework in preparation for a future career.

Research Labs

Exercise & Sport Psychology Laboratory

Develops interventions to increase physical activity and health eating, and seeks to understand the benefits of exercise for mental health.


Studies the organization of memory systems with the goal of developing targeted treatments for memory disorders.

Human Locomotion Lab

Studies how biomechanics affect physiology and performance.

Neuromuscular Physiology Research Laboratory

Conducts studies specializing in the investigation of neuromuscular control patterns in healthy, clinical and aging populations with the use of intramuscular fine-wire recording and electrical stimulation.

Neurorehabilitation and Biomechanics Lab

Seeks to understand the mechanisms of biomechanical and neuromuscular control of normal and pathological movements and to apply this knowledge to design interventions that improve functional movements.

Sensorimotor Neuroplasticity Lab

Studies the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying control of normal and abnormal human movement.


Undergraduate students interested in studying Rehabilitation Movement Science can choose related coursework in the following majors:


These majors allow students to select a specialization in Disability Studies which offers courses specializing in working with students with a variety of disabling conditions.


Students not majoring in Kinesiology and Health Education may pursue an interdisciplinary minor with a Disability Studies track, and/or enroll in selected undergraduate courses that may fulfill degree requirements in a variety of academic degree programs on campus.

Undergraduate students interested in pursuing any of these options should consult with a Kinesiology and Health Education academic advisor in the College of Education.


Photo of Owen Beck

Owen Beck

Assistant Professor

Studies how biomechanics affect human physiology and locomotion performance. Particularly interested in how body dimensions and muscle-tendon mechanics affect metabolism, fatigue and speed.

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Pam Buchanan

Assistant Professor of Instruction

Specializes in adapted physical education and working with children with disabilities by providing sensory and motor integration training.

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Brian Farr

Clinical Associate Professor

Serves as Director of the Athletic Training Education Program and specializes in sports medicine, training athletes, athletic injuries, strength and conditioning, and sports rehabilitation.

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Michael Freedberg

Assistant Professor

Investigates the organization and interactions between memory systems using noninvasive brain stimulation and fMRI with the goal of developing targeted interventions to rescue memory in patients with memory loss.

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Lisa Griffin

Associate Professor

Investigates neural control mechanisms during muscle fatigue and aging with single-motor unit recording, and designs electrical stimulation protocols for individuals with paralysis.

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Katelyn Hatfield

Assistant Professor of Instruction

Academic interests include health behavior, exercise physiology and human performance.

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Hao Yuan Hsiao

Assistant Professor

Studies the biomechanical and neuromuscular control mechanisms of human movement and translates this knowledge into practical solutions that reduce walking-related disability

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Sara Hussain

Assistant Professor

Studies the neural mechanisms of human motor control and uses this information to develop new brain stimulation interventions that improve motor function in patients with neurological damage.

Photo of Esbelle Jowers

Esbelle Jowers

Research Assistant Professor

Studies school and community-based interventions regarding physical activity, healthy eating, and the prevention of chronic disease.

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Kelvin Phan

Clinical Assistant Professor

Researches the practical applications of biomechanics and dynamic postural control associated with sport-related injuries.

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Safeer Sidicky

Assistant Professor of Instruction

Studies the biomechanics of infants in commercial baby gear and orthopedic devices, and parents/caregivers carrying infants during activities of daily living.