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Dr. Bodison first became interested in working with children when she volunteered at her local children’s hospital during high school. She found occupational therapy shortly after entering college, and while volunteering at the now famous Ayres Clinic in Torrance, CA, was fascinated to learn that some people’s nervous systems handle sensory information differently than others. She remembers one instance in particular, where a little boy was having trouble playing with sticky materials and started to cry saying that it “hurt his hands”. Ever since then, Dr. Bodison has worked diligently to better understand the sensory systems and learn ways to improve the lives of children whose nervous systems react differently to sensory information.

The mission of Sensory Development Lab is to examine the ways the human brain processes and integrates sensory information. In particular, we are interested in the interaction that happens between the touch, movement (vestibular) and muscle (proprioceptive) sensory systems. We believe that these body-centered sensory systems have to work well together so that children can develop motor skills and understand how their bodies relate to the world and people around them. For children whose sensory systems don’t work well together, they may have delays in the attainment of gross and fine motor skills, appear uncoordinated, and/or can become self-conscious about interacting with others in a coordinated way.

Sensory Development Lab’s research is supported by public funding from the federal and state government, foundations, and private supporters. We accept donations to further our mission of improving the lives of children with sensory processing concerns. If you wish to consider supporting Sensory Development Lab, please make checks payable to “The University of Florida” and send them to:

Department of Occupational Therapy     University of Florida        1225 Center Dr P.O. Box 100164           Gainesville, FL 3260