Faculty Spotlight: Shelly Mulligan

Shelley Mulligan, Associate Professor in the UNH Department of Occupational Therapy, has been associated with the NH-ME LEND program as a faculty member, clinical occupational therapist, and mentor for over 20 years. Shelley’s research and practice has focused on the study and development of quality supports and occupational therapy services for children with neurodevelopmental concerns including attention, learning, sensory processing, and autism spectrum disorders. She is a passionate teacher who instills the importance of family-centered care and collaborative provider partnerships throughout her instruction in pediatric clinical practice, child development, and research methods.

Shelley’s research has focused on the development and evaluation of assessment tools for measuring sensory processing and integration functions in children. Currently, she is collaborating with two colleagues on the development of a new comprehensive measure of sensory processing for children and adults, called the Sensory Processing 3 Dimensions Assessment (SP3D). The SP3D is in the final phases of normative data collection with an anticipated release in 2021-22. Research to date on the test’s psychometrics has been promising to the extent that Shelley and her colleagues anticipate the tool to become the gold standard for measuring sensory modulation behaviors, sensory perception and discrimination, and sensory-based motor disorders including dyspraxia.

Shelley acknowledges that some of the most meaningful and important work she does is serving as a Court-Appointed Special Advocate (CASA volunteer) to advocate for and support children who have experienced abuse and neglect. In her spare time, you may find her on the golf course, rowing down the Cocheco River, skiing, or spending quiet time at home with family and friends.

Schoen, S., Mulligan, S., Miller, L., & J., Valdez (2019). Validity of The Occupational Performance Scale of the Sensory Processing Three Dimensions Assessment.American Journal of Occupational Therapy. https://scholarworks.wmich.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1505&context=ojot