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Gerald Voelbel

Associate Professor of Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy


Gerald Voelbel, PhD is an Associate Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience in the Department of Occupational Therapy. His main research interests focus on the development of neuroplasticity-based cognitive remediation techniques to improve cognitive deficits, such as processing speed, executive function, and working memory in individuals with traumatic brain injuries. Dr. Voelbel investigates the remediation of the cognitive deficits as they relate to performing everyday tasks and psychological problems. An additional area of interest for Dr. Voelbel is the use of functional and structural imaging methods to identify biomarkers of cognitive deficits in concussions and in more severe traumatic brain injuries.


Current Studies

1. Verbal Working Memory and Attention Remediation for Adults with Traumatic Brain Injury

The purpose of this study is to examine if cognition in individuals with moderate to severe traumatic brain injury can be improved. This project examines if computerized cognitive remediation improves working memory and attention in adults with moderate to severe brain injury. Clinical Study Identifier: s20-00130
If you had a brain injury, between the ages of 18 and 65, no current substance use, do not have a diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder or Schizophrenia contact me at or

click here.

2. Evaluation of the Supports for Individuals with a Brain or Brain Stem Condition

This is a survey study is investigating the difficulties and challenges faced by individuals with acquired brain injury to determine the needs of individuals and their families who have been affected by a

brain or brainstem injury. This project will focus on the needs and participation of everyday activities of individuals between the ages of 13 to 30 years old. If you are individual with a brain injury or family members of a person with a brain injury and are to complete 64 survey questions regarding the social, educational and health needs please click here to complete the survey.

Selected Publications

  • Lindsey, H.M., Lazar, M., Mercuri, G., Rath, J.F., Bushnik, T., Flanagan, S., and Voelbel, G.T. (2022). The effects of plasticity-based cognitive rehabilitation on resting-state functional connectivity in chronic traumatic brain injury: A pilot study. NeuroRehabilitation. DOI: 10.3233/NRE-210264
  • Kim, G.J., Kim, H., Fletcher, J. Voelbel, G.T., Goverover, Y., Chen, P., O'Dell, M.W., & Genova, H.M. (2022). The differential impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on healthcare utilization disruption for community-dwelling individuals with and without acquired brain injury. Archives of Rehabilitation Research and Clinical Translation, 4(1):100176. doi:10.1016/j.arrct.2021.100176
  • Goverover, Y., Kim, G., Chen, M., Voelbel, G.T., Rosenfeld, M., Botticello, A., DeLuca, J., Genova, H. (2022). The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on engagement in activities of daily living in persons with acquired brain injury. Brain Injury, 25,1-8. doi: 10.1080/02699052.2022.2043441.
  • Goverover, Y.  Chen, M. H., Botticello, A., Voelbel, G.T., Kim, G., DeLuca, J., & Genova, H.M. (2021). Relationships between changes in daily occupations and health-related quality of life in persons with multiple sclerosis during the COVID-19 pandemic. Multiple Sclerosis and Related Disorders, 57:103339.
  • Voelbel, G.T., Lindsey, H.M., Mercuri, G., Bushnik, T., & Rath, J. (2021). The Effects of Neuroplasticity-Based Auditory Information Processing Remediation in Adults with Chronic Traumatic Brain Injury. Neurorehabilitation,49(2), 267-278.
  • Liberta, T.A., Kagiwada, M., Ho, K., Spat-Lemus, J., Voelbel, G.T., Kohn, A., Perrine, K., Josephs, L., McLean, E.A., & Sacks-Zimmerman, A. (2020). An Investigation of Cogmed Working Memory Training for Neurological Surgery Patients. Interdisciplinary Neurosurgery.21.
  • Lee, C.D. & Voelbel, G.T. (2020). Occupational Therapy Intervention for Preventing Prescription Opioid Use Disorder in Older Adults. Special Interest Section Quarterly Practice Connection. 
  • Newman, R.M., Alfano, C., Radomski, M.V., Pergolotti, M., Wolf, T, Sleight, A., Leak, A.B., Voelbel, G.T., de Moor, J., Nitkin, R., Daniels, E., Braveman, B., Walker, R.K., Williams, G., Winters-Stone, K.M., Cheville, A., Campbell, S., Lawlor, M., King, A., Ness, K., Srivastava, P., Lyons, K.D. (2019). Catalyzing Research to Optimize Cancer Survivors’ Participation in Work and Life Roles. OTJR: Occupation, Participation, and Health.  
  • Voelbel, G.T., Wu, Z., Tortarolo, C., & Bates, M.E. (2016). Executive Dysfunction and Processing Speed Predict Nonverbal Problem Solving Deficits in a Substance Use Disorder Population. International Journal of Brain Disorders and Treatment. 2(1), 1-5.
  • Halkitis, P.N., D’Avanzo, P., Stults, C.B., Levy, M.D., Krause, K.D., Kupprat, S.A., Voelbel.G.T., Urbina, A.E., Kapadia, F. (2016). Neurocognitive functioning in an urban clinic-based sample of adults ages 50 and older living with HIV. Journal of HIV/AIDS & Social Service.
  • Stojanovic-Radic, J., Wylie, G., Voelbel, G.T., Chiaravalloti, N., & DeLuca, J. (2014). Neuroimaging and Cognition using functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) in Multiple Sclerosis. Brain Imaging and Behavior. Published online June 11. 2014, DOI:10.1007/s11682-014-9307-y
  • Voelbel, G.T., Genova, H.M., Chiaravalotti, N.D., & Hoptman, M.J. (2012). Diffusion Tensor Imaging of Traumatic Brain Injury Review: Implications for Neurorehabilitation. NeuroRehabilitation, 31(3), 281-293.


Occupational Therapy

NYU Steinhardt’s occupational therapy program educates both aspiring OTs and credentialed professionals looking to further develop their practices.

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Rehabilitation Sciences

Prepare for a career in interdisciplinary rehabilitation research through intensive study across health fields and work with faculty leaders.

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Cognition and everyday life: The Science of Neurorehabilitation

This course explores the brain and its functions. Emphasis will be on cognition and cognitive disorders. Students will explore cognitive disorders and the effect on everyday life functions in New York and in Tel Aviv, Israel.
Course #
OT-UE 1011
Occupational Therapy
Liberal Arts Core
Natural Science


Neuroanatomy and neurophysiology underlying occupational therapy theory and practice. A foundation in neuroscience to facilitate understanding of human performance as the culmination of the influences of multiple systems.
Course #
OT-GE 2010
Occupational Therapy

Survey of Medical Conditions

Etiology, pathology, and sequela of selected medical, psychiatric, orthopedic, and neurological conditions that frequently necessitate occupational therapy intervention. Standard diagnostic systems and somatic treatments are reviewed.
Course #
OT-GE 2039
Occupational Therapy