Portrait of Dana Washburn

Dana Washburn, MS, OTR/L

  • Clinical Associate Professor, Programs in Occupational Therapy Science, Technology & Rehabilitation


MS Occupational Therapy Rush University 1998
BS Communications studies and in economics Northwestern University 1990

Speaker Topics

  • Shoulder treatment
  • OT inpatient or outpatient rehabilitation
  • Interprofessional education

Interests & Expertise

Dana has 25 years of experience as an occupational therapist and 12 years as an occupational therapy educator at UWM’s Occupational Therapy Program. 

Her area of expertise is physical rehabilitation of adults and she has worked in a variety of practice settings, including acute care, sub-acute rehabilitation, home health and outpatient therapy. She has significant clinical expertise in the area of shoulder rehabilitation. She is passionate about interprofessional education and teamwork.  

In the area of research, Dana completed her master's thesis on the topic of patient compliance with occupational therapy treatment programs. She is currently a student in UWM’s Urban Education PhD program within the Adult, Continuing and Higher Education Concentration. Her dissertation topic is interprofessional education. She hopes to complete her doctoral studies in 2024. 

Professional Memberships

  • American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)
  • Wisconsin Occupational Therapy Association (WOTA)

Selected Publications


Washburn, D. H. (October 2023). Dissertation Trajectory and PhD Process. Pi Theta Epsiolon Lecture Series, Online.
Washburn, D. H. (April 2023). Head Start to Meaningful OT–OTA Collaboration: An Intraprofessional Learning Activity. AOTA Inspire Conference 2023, Kansas City, MO.
Washburn, D. H. (March 2023). Interprofessional Education (IPE), Experiential Learning, and Teams. Pi Theta Epsilon Lecture Series at UW-Milwaukee, Online.
Washburn, D. H. (October 2022). Interprofessional Education (IPE) for Healthcare Students: How Does Teamwork Develop?. American Association of Adult and Continuing Education 2022 Annual Conference, Milwaukee, WI.
Washburn, D. H. (August 2022). Innovations and Reflections on Occupational Therapy Instruction in the Age of COVID-19. WFOT Congress 2022, Paris, France.
Washburn, D. H. (2021). Lost in Translation. UW-Madison ADEPT Virtual Speaker Series, Online.
Washburn, D. H., & Bolwerk, N. (2019). Screening and Assessment of Upper Extremity Dysfunction: Proximal Contributions and the Big Picture. AOTA Annual Conference & Expo, New Orleans, LA.
Washburn, D. H. (2018). Occupation-Based Shoulder Intervention for Clients with Shoulder Dysfunction. AOTA Annual Conference & Expo, Salt Lake City, UT.
Washburn, D. H. (September 2018). Non-Surgical Evaluation and Treatment of the Shoulder. UW-Milwaukee Continuing Education Course, Milwaukee, WI.
Washburn, D. H. (2016). Evidence-Based Shoulder Assessment. AOTA Annual Conference & Expo, Chicago, IL.
Washburn, D. H., & Sindhu, B. (2016). OT Assessment and Treatment of Brachial Plexus Entrapment. Mini-WOTA SES Conference, Appleton, WI.
DeGroot, J., Paul, H., Washburn, D. H., Sindhu, B., & Garg, A. (2015). Functional range of motion of the wrist joint under varied grasping tasks. Paper presented at the 14th Annual UW-System Symposium For Undergraduate Research & Creative Activity, Milwaukee, WI.

Honors & Awards

James C. Fisher Adult Education Scholarship (2021, August) UW-Milwaukee School of Education.
UWM Individual Professional Development Award (2021, June) UW-Milwaukee.
Byoung Kim Excellence in Teaching Award (2020) College of Health Sciences, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
Chancellor's Graduate Student Award (2020, June) UW-Milwaukee.

Courses Taught

  • OT in Physical Rehabilitation I and II
  • Physical Agents in Rehabilitation
  • Professional Development Seminars I, II and III 
  • Critical Evaluation of Theory, Research and Practice