Liz Bell and Kurt Collier receiving awards at the 2017 AOPA World Congress in Las Vegas

September 21, 2017

Liz Bell, a Kinesiology master’s student working under the mentorship of Dr. Jae Shim, received the Edwin & Kathryn Arbogast Award from AOPA (American Orthotic and Prosthetic Association) for her project, “A Mixed-Methods Examination of Limitations to Physical Activity as Reported by Individuals with Lower Extremity Amputations.”

Ms. Bell’s work investigates how people with lower-extremity amputations view their own limitations to physical activity. Eighty-nine participants took an online survey which asked them to select up to four important key terms related to physical activity. “Comfort” was the most commonly selected term by respondents as an important key related to physical activity. To gain insight into what was limiting the physical activity of participants, qualitative analysis of the short-answer responses categorized the limitations mentioned. Reported limitations to comfort were arranged by demographic parameters including level of lower-extremity amputation, time since amputation and cause of amputation. Ms. Bell's research found that discomfort was reported for prosthetic causes, such as issues with socket fit, as well as physical causes, such as co-morbidities. The Department of Kinesiology's Dr. Shannon Jette was a collaborator on the project.

At their 100th anniversary celebration, AOPA also presented the University of Maryland with an Excellence in Education Award for the prosthetics and orthotics education at the graduate and undergraduate level, and research through NIH and DOD funded projects on human locomotion of individuals with lower extremity amputation (PI: Jae Kun Shim). Mr. Kurt Collier, Certified Prosthetist and instructor in the School of Public Health’s Department of Kinesiology, was there to receive the award. Mr. Collier and Dr. Shim created an undergraduate course titled “KNES498W Prosthetics for Limb Amputations” to provide necessary education to our students and others, and the class has been offered every semester since its inception.

Related People
Elizabeth (Nottingham) Bell
Related Degree: 
MA, Kinesiology