Megan MacDonald

Academic interests

Movement and physical activity are essential components in a healthy lifestyle for individuals at any age and ability. My research interests are related to how motor skills and physically active lifestyles improve the lives of children and youth with and without disabilities. I have a specific research interest in the movement skills of children with autism spectrum disorder including how to improve motor skills for children with autism and how motor skills interact with social communication skills.


Megan MacDonald, PhD is a professor of kinesiology, the early childhood research core director at the Hallie E. Ford Center for Children and Families and the OSU IMPACT for Life faculty scholar - all housed within the College of Health and. Her vision is that every child is active and accepted.

Megan works to achieve her vision by conducting high-quality research, teaching and outreach focused on youthful activity for all people.

Her research has been published in high-impact academic journals in her field, and she has disseminated her work at academic and professional meetings nationally and internationally. Her work has also been supported through distinguished funding mechanisms, including the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the U.S. Department of Education Office of Special Education programs.

Megan earned her PhD from the University of Michigan in 2011, and she disseminates her ideas to the public through various mechanisms, including articles and essays, news interviews, presentations, lectures and op-eds.  Her opinions have been featured widely, including U.S. News & World Report, The Hill and the Los Angeles Times. 

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