Skip to main content

Susan McCurry PhD

Research Professor Emerita
Adjunct Research Professor, Psychiatry & Behavioral Health
Affiliate Investigator, Kaiser Permanente Washington Health Research Institute

I am a clinical psychologist specializing in gerontology and geriatrics, and have been involved in research and clinical practice with older adults for over 30 years. I received my PhD at University of Nevada Reno, where I was trained in contextual behavioral science. As part of the School of Nursing Northwest Research Group on Aging team, I have since 1991 worked to help develop, systematically evaluate, and translate nonpharmacological interventions to improve quality of life for persons with cognitive impairment. My ongoing research includes: (1) assessment and treatment of sleep disturbances in aging adults with co-morbid medical conditions including Alzheimer’s disease, chronic pain, kidney disease, and menopausal vasomotor symptoms; (2) development and evaluation of training programs for family and professional staff caring for persons with dementia; and (3) examination of the environmental, behavioral, and psychosocial factors associated with successful aging and cognitive decline.



  • BA, Pomona College, 1974
  • MS, University of Nevada-Las Vegas, 1977
  • MS, University of Nevada-Las Vegas, 1984
  • PhD, University of Nevada-Reno, 1991
  • Postdoctoral Geropsychology Fellowship, University of Washington, 1993

Awards and accolades

  • Fellow, Association for Contextual Behavioral Science
  • Fellow, Gerontological Society of America

What do you love about the UW School of Nursing?

The School of Nursing is a community of students and faculty characterized by intellectual rigor, commitment to global health, and a passion for support of diversity and innovation in training, research, and community service. If you care about making the world a better place, the School of Nursing is the place for you.

Scholarly work

  • McCurry, S.M. (2006). When a family member has dementia: Steps to becoming a resilient caregiver. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers.
  • McCurry, S.M., & Drossel, C. (2011). Treating dementia in context: A step by step guide to working with individuals and families. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association Press.


Child, Family, and Population Health Nursing

Research Areas

  • Lifespan Health

Research Centers

Picture of  Susan McCurry

University of Washington School of Nursing
Dept of Child, Family, and Population Health Nursing
Box 357262
1959 NE Pacific St.
Seattle, WA 98195