Marjorie Woollacott, Ph.D., is an Emeritus Professor of Human Physiology, and member of the Institute of Neuroscience, at the University of Oregon. She was chair of the Human Physiology Department for seven years. In addition to teaching courses on neuroscience and rehabilitation, she taught courses on complementary and alternative medicine and meditation. She is Research Director for the International Association of Near-Death Studies (IANDS) and is President of the Academy for the Advancement of Postmaterialist Sciences (AAPS). Woollacott graduated magna cum laude from the University of Southern California and was elected to membership in Phi Beta Kappa. She received her Ph.D. in Neuroscience from the University of Southern California and her M.A. from the University of Oregon in Asian Studies. She was also a research professor in the Department of Psychology at the University of Umea in Umea, Sweden, and in the National Center for Scientific Research in Marseille, France.
Woollacott has received over 7.2 million dollars in research funding for her research in child development, aging, rehabilitation medicine and most recently, meditation. Her areas of expertise include: 1) changes in attentional performance skills and underlying neural networks associated with the mental training of meditation and tai chi; 2) the phenomenon of spiritually transformative experiences, including near-death experiences, 3) the development of balance and attentional abilities in children and factors leading to loss of balance function in aging, and in patients with movement disorders, 4) the design of assessment and treatment strategies to improve balance and attentional abilities. These include testing the efficacy of alternative forms of therapy such as tai chi and meditation for improving both attention and balance and gait abilities in patient populations; and 5) the development of musical performance skills in musicians.
Woollacott has published more than 200 scientific articles and written or co-edited eight books. She is the co-author, with Dr. Anne Shumway-Cook of the textbook for health care professionals, titled: Motor Control: Translating Research into Clinical Practice, in its 6th edition (2021). Her latest book, Infinite Awareness (2015) (winner of eight awards, including the 2017 Parapsychological Association Book Award, Eric Hoffer Book Award and the Nautilus Book Award) pairs Woollacott’s research as a neuroscientist with her self-revelations about the mind’s spiritual power. Between the scientific and spiritual worlds, she breaks open the definition of human consciousness to investigate the existence of a non-physical and infinitely powerful mind.