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Cluster Leads:

Norma Conner, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Nursing

Denise Gammonley, Ph.D.

Associate Professor of Social Work

Aman Behal, Ph.D.

Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering

“Technology serving humanity”

UCF’s Disability, Aging and Technology Cluster is helping disabled people and the elderly move better and smarter, as well as lead healthier and stronger lives.

They work against a backdrop where:

  • Advances in medicine and technology are helping people live longer despite advanced age and previously life-ending traumatic injuries.
  • Assistive technology has provided some independence and improved quality of life, but many chronic conditions lack effective preventative medical treatment or cure and strain our healthcare systems.
  • An increasing array of technological innovations are available to patients and care givers to support self-management, maintenance of functional abilities and care delivery, but their practical application remains critical targets for research, education and service.

The Disability, Aging and Technology Cluster designs, develops and disseminates practical and affordable interventions to help reintegrate people using technology while promoting health and well-being.

The cluster also enhances positive physical and psycho-social factors related to good health, informs policy and develops technological innovations through research, education and service partnerships.

UCF assistive robot
View some of the Disability, Aging and Technology Cluster’s assistive robots here.

Disability, Aging and Technology (DAT) Research



  • “Factors affecting the likelihood of a hospitalization following a diabetes-related emergency department Visit: A regional and urban-rural analysis”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Journal of Diabetes 12(9):686-696: May, 2020
  • “Patient satisfaction with primary care physician performance in a multicultural population”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Israel Journal of Health Policy Research 9(1), 1-9: Mar, 2020
  • “Violence against healthcare workers and other serious responses to medical disputes in China: Survey of patients at 12 public hospitals”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., BMC Health Services Research 20(1):253: Mar, 2020
  • “Fruit and vegetable intake in relation to depressive and anxiety symptoms among adolescents in 25 low- and middle-income countries”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Journal of Affective Disorders 15;261:172-180: Jan, 2020
  • “A multi-level analyses of charges and cost of fall-related hospitalizations among older adults: Individual, hospital, and geospatial variation”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Journal of Aging & Social Policy Mar 21:1-22: Mar, 2020
  • “Multi-level factors associated with social participation among stroke survivors: China's Health and Retirement Longitudinal Study (2011-2015)”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health 16(24), 121: Dec, 2020
  • “Congestive heart failure-related hospital deaths across the urban-rural continuum in the United States”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Preventive Medicine Reports Nov 6;16: Nov, 2020
  • “Geographic disparities associated with travel to medical care and attendance in programs to prevent/manage chronic illness among middle-aged and older adults in Texas”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Rural and Remote Health 19(4):5147: Nov, 2019
  • “The association of social isolation on the risk of stroke among middle-aged and older adults in China”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., American Journal of Epidemiology 188(8):1456-1465: May, 2019
  • “Impact of a behavioral intervention on diet, eating patterns, self-efficacy, and social support: A quasi-experimental study”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior 52(2):180-186: Sep, 2019
  • “The association between loneliness and cognitive impairment among older men and women in China: A nationwide longitudinal study”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health 16(16):2877: Aug, 2019
  • “Diabetes-related hospital mortality in the U.S.: A pooled cross-sectional study of the national inpatient sample”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Journal of Diabetes and its Complications 33(5):350-355: Feb, 2019
  • “The changing landscape of diabetes mortality in the United States across region and rurality, 1999-2016”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Journal of Rural Health 36(3):410-415: Feb, 2019
  • “Trends in geospatial drivers of fall-related hospitalizations and asset mapping of fall prevention interventions for vulnerable older adults”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Journal of Aging and Health. 32(5-6):328-339: Jan, 2019
  • “Delivery of fall prevention Interventions for at-risk older adults in rural areas: Findings from a national dissemination”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., International Journal of Environmental Research & Public Health 15(12), 2798: Dec, 2018
  • “Knowledge, attitudes, and practices related to the establishment of the National Hierarchical Medical System (NHMS) among outpatients in Chinese tertiary hospitals”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Medicine 97(35): Aug, 2018
  • “Effects of sequential participation in evidence-based programs among older adults”, Samuel Towne, Ph.D., Innovation in Aging 2(2): Jun, 2018
  • “Co-designing for community oversight: Helping people make privacy and security decisions together”, Pamela Wisniewski, Ph.D., Proceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction 2(CSCW): Nov, 2019
  • “A patient-centered perspective of health information systems that support post-acute care”, Pamela Wisniewski, Ph.D., Journal of Integrated Design and Process Science 20(1), pp. 95-110: Jun, 2016
  • “Carebit: A mobile app for remote informal caregiving”, Pamela Wisniewski, Ph.D., 2019 ACM Conference on Computer Supported Cooperative Work : Nov, 2019
  • “Myoelectric control of a soft synergy-inspired prosthetic hand: improving hand-object interactions”, Qiushi Fu, Ph.D., Frontiers in Neurorobotics 11, 71: Jan, 2018
  • “Coordination between digit forces and positions: interactions between anticipatory and feedback control”, Qiushi Fu, Ph.D., Journal of Neurophysiology 111(7):1519-1528: Apr, 2014
  • “Context-dependent learning interferes with visuomotor transformations for manipulation planning”, Qiushi Fu, Ph.D., Journal of Neuroscience 32(43):15086-92: Oct, 2012
  • “Anticipatory planning and control of grasp positions and forces for dexterous two-digit manipulation”, Qiushi Fu, Ph.D., Journal of Neuroscience 30(27): 9117-26: Jul, 2010
  • “Retention and interference of learned dexterous manipulation: interaction between multiple sensorimotor processes”, Qiushi Fu, Ph.D., Journal of Neurophysiology 113(1):144-55: Jan, 2020
  • “Implementing lifestyle change interventions to prevent type 2 diabetes in US medicaid programs: Cost effectiveness, and cost, health, and health equity impact”, Boon Peng Ng, Ph.D., Applied Health Economics and Health Policy 1-14: Jul, 2020
  • “Cost-effectiveness of diabetes prevention interventions targeting high-risk individuals and whole populations: A systematic review”, Boon Peng Ng, Ph.D., Diabetes Care 43(7), 1593: Jul, 2020
  • “Retention among participants in the National Diabetes Prevention Program Lifestyle Change Program”, Boon Peng Ng, Ph.D., Diabetes Care: Jul, 2020
  • “Using a community advisory board to develop a serious game for older adults undergoing treatment for cancer”, Victoria Loerzel, Ph.D., Applied Nursing Research 39, 207-210: Feb, 2018
  • “Symptom self-management in older adults with cancer”, Victoria Loerzel, Ph.D., Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing 22(1), 83-90: Jan, 2018
  • “Mood variations decoded from multi-site intracranial human brain activity”, Yuxiao Yang, Ph.D., Nature Biotechnology 36, 954-96: Sep, 2018
  • “A control-theoretic system identification framework and a real-time closed-loop clinical simulation testbed for electrical brain stimulation”, Yuxiao Yang, Ph.D., Journal of Neural Engineering 15(6), p.066007: Sep, 2018
  • “Developing a personalized closed-loop controller of medically-induced coma in a rodent model”, Yuxiao Yang, Ph.D., Journal of Neural Engineering 16(3), p.036022: Apr, 2019
  • “Dynamic network modeling and dimensionality reduction for human ECoG activity”, Yuxiao Yang, Ph.D., Journal of Neural Engineering 16(5), p.056014: Aug, 2019
  • “An adaptive and generalizable closed-loop system for control of medically induced coma and other states of anesthesia”, Yuxiao Yang, Ph.D., Journal of Neural Engineering 13(6), p.066019: Nov, 2016
  • “The benefit of moderate alcohol use on mood and functional ability in later-life: Due to beers or frequent cheers?”, Daniel Paulson, Ph.D., The Gerontologist 60(1), 80-88: Oct, 2018

Disability, Aging and Technology (DAT) Degree Programs

UCF offers multiple degree programs for students interested in pursuing careers and research in disability, aging and technology. For more programs, search UCF programs below.

Disability, Aging and Technology (DAT) Faculty