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Carolyn Mason: A Unique Perspective

September 13, 2007

Dr. Carolyn Mason brings her own experience as both a therapist and a patient to the students in her graduate physical therapy classes.

Having dealt with rheumatoid arthritis since she was 15 years old, Mason truly knows both sides of the therapist-patient relationship. By coupling that knowledge with her expertise in neuroscience, Mason gives her students a unique perspective on treating patients.

“There is the science, the foundation, so we know why we do lots of stuff in physical therapy,” Mason said. “Then, there is also the art, which is the interaction of the physical therapist with the patient. I really enjoy seeing the students when they have those “a-ha” moments, particularly in neuroscience, when they can see the whole picture.”

A member of the ASU faculty since 2003, Mason was a finalist for the 2007 Teaching Excellence Award. She particularly enjoys the faculty camaraderie and support at ASU that is not always found at all institutions. She is also popular amongst the students, earning outstanding course evaluation scores.

“I was looking for a relatively new program that would allow me to bring my theories and the way I wanted to teach into the classroom,” Mason said. “That lets me not be bound by tradition and be able to respond to the needs of the students, the curriculum and the program and have that flexibility to use my potential in the best ways.”

With her eye on the future, Mason is pursuing certification in aquatic therapy to stay abreast of that quickly growing area of her field and with the ultimate goal of adding it to the ASU program.

In her spare time Mason enjoys cooking and gardening. She has been known to try out new recipes on unsuspecting dinner guests and is currently landscaping her new home.