Catherine Willmott

Assoc Professor

1994 …2023

Research activity per year

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Personal profile


Dr. Willmott BSci (Hons), MSc, PhD, is a Senior Lecturer and Program Deputy Lead - Brain Injury & Rehabilitation Theme, across the Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health, School of Psychological Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Monash University and the Monash-Epworth Rehabilitation Research Centre. She is Academic Lead of the Neuropsychology and Concussion Clinics at the Monash Psychology Centre. Dr Willmott is also an Honorary Senior Research Fellow within the National Trauma Research Institute at The Alfred. 

TBI is one of the largest causes of disability in young people and results in significant lifetime care burden. Resultant cognitive deficits prohibit patients from returning to previous life roles. Dr. Willmott's aim has been to develop and conduct cutting edge translational research that will improve scientific understanding of impaired cognition in these patients and rehabilitation treatments to facilitate return to work, study, driving, sport or other activities. She has established an international and interdisciplinary network of collaborations.

Over the past 25 years, Dr. Willmott has conducted research into the rehabilitation of adult and paediatric traumatic brain injury (TBI) populations. In the early 2000s she was involved, along with Professor Jennie Ponsford, in studies identifying the contribution of factors to ongoing symptoms following mild TBI in adults and children. This involved developing and evaluating information booklets for mild TBI patients, subsequently requested by over 100 different clinical and research bodies worldwide, and translated into 8 languages, and validating a revised version of the Westmead PTA Scale for screening mild TBI patients in the Emergency Department. She is currently investigating the use of accelerometers in measuring head impacts and sports concussion in collaboration with the National Trauma Research Institute at The Alfred with funding from a National Health & Medical Research Council Partnership Grant, partnering with the Australian Football League.

Dr. Willmott has also conducted research into cognitive problems associated with moderate-severe TBI in adult and paediatric populations. Findings from the largest ever successful trial of drug therapy to reduce attentional problems, conducted in collaboration with Professor Jennie Ponsford, are underpinning ground-breaking imaging studies to examine the brain pathways that mediate effective treatments, in collaboration with the Monash Biomedical Imaging platform. She is also investigating genetic biomarkers for recovery and response to pharmacological treatments. This research has been funded by Monash University, the Victorian Neurotrauma Initiative and the Epworth Research Institute. Dr. Willmott has also recently commenced collaborations with the Murdoch Children's Research Institute, investigating specific language impairment in children and the developmental trajectory of cognitive sequelae associated with pre-term births.

Dr. Willmott is a registered Psychologist with the Psychology Board of Australia and an active member of the following: Australian Psychological Society - College of Clinical Neuropsychologists (APS-CCN); The International Neuropsychological Society (INS); and the Australian Society for the Study of Brain Impairment (ASSBI). She serves an external reviewer for the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society, Journal of Neurotrauma, Journal of Neuropsychology, Brain Injury and has been on the Editorial Board for the journal ISRN Rehabilitation. She has served an external reviewer for NHMRC.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Research area keywords

  • Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI)

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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