Adam Woods appointed PHHP associate dean for research

Adam Woods at computer
Dr. Adam Woods

The University of Florida College of Public Health and Health Professions has named cognitive neuroscientist Adam Woods, Ph.D., its associate dean for research.

A member of the UF faculty since 2013, Woods is an associate professor in the college’s department of clinical and health psychology where he has also served as associate chair for research. He is the associate director of the Center for Cognitive Aging and Memory in the UF McKnight Brain Institute. His research focuses on discovery and application of novel non-invasive interventions for enhancing cognitive function in older adults, including those with neurodegenerative disease. Over the past five years, he has established one of the largest and most well-funded neuromodulation laboratories in the United States.

“I am delighted to have Adam as a member of the college leadership team. I’m excited about his energy and ideas,” said Beth A. Virnig, Ph.D., M.P.H., dean of the College of Public Health and Health Professions.

The UF College of Public Health and Health Professions received $34.2 million in new research awards in fiscal year 2021-22, placing the college ninth in NIH funding among schools of public health at public universities, according to the Blue Ridge Institute for Medical Research. As associate dean for research, Woods will focus on the development of junior faculty, and building college-level programs and resources.

Woods’ current research projects include the Augmenting Clinical Training in Older Adults: The ACT Study, which pairs transcranial direct stimulation with cognitive training designed to improve working memory and processing speed. He serves as one of the principal investigators for the Revitalize Study, the largest trial of its kind to examine the effects of applying near-infrared light noninvasively to the scalp through a cap placed on a participant’s head. He is a study site principal investigator for the Preventing Alzheimer’s with Cognitive Training, or PACT, study exploring whether computerized brain training exercises can reduce the risk of mild cognitive impairment and dementias, such as Alzheimer’s disease, in older adults. And he is one of the principal investigators for a study that uses artificial intelligence technology to evaluate 16 million datapoints captured from participants in the ACT Study.

Woods was recently awarded one of two UF Foundation Term Professorships, presented in support of the university’s preeminence goals to advance faculty research efforts. He received the department of clinical and health psychology’s Excellence in Research Mentoring Award in 2020 and a University Preeminence Term Professorship in 2018.