Dr. Cheatham Oberle is a pediatric therapist who works to analyze cognitive skills that support and hinder participation in home, school, and community activities. She supports children who struggle with executive functioning skills with a variety of backgrounds and diagnoses. Dr. Cheatham Oberle is especially interested in designing and implementing cognitive groups for children, adolescents, and families.
Dr. Cheatham Oberle’s research interests include program design, implementation and evaluation of Train Your Brain, an executive functioning support program for children and adolescents. She is also curious about the participation patterns of d/Deaf children, especially those who use listening and spoken language, and potential barriers to their desired participation.
Additionally, Dr. Cheatham Oberle serves as a blinded assessor on a multi-site, national randomized controlled trial to evaluate the dosage efficacy of constraint-induced movement therapy (CIMT) for young children with unilateral cerebral palsy.
Dr. Cheatham Oberle is a co-course director for Pediatric Evaluation and Intervention, a tutor for Case-Based Learning and an instructor for Fundamentals of Professional Communication. She provides support for Professional Identity and Practice.
2008: BA in Psychology from Wake Forest University
2013: Occupational Therapy Doctorate (OTD) from Washington University in St. Louis
Since graduating from Washington University in 2013 with her doctoral degree, Dr. Cheatham Oberle has had a variety of experiences working with children and their families in clinical and research settings as well as mentoring graduate students through their scholarly work. Dr. Cheatham Oberle started her career coordinating a research lab that explored environmental factors that contribute to the neurodevelopment of babies in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). She then transitioned to providing OT clinical services to children at Central Institute for the Deaf (CID) in 2015, a formative experience that led to her interest in executive functioning skills in children and adolescents. While at CID, Dr. Cheatham Oberle also saw outpatient clients, including children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and other executive functioning struggles as well as recent NICU graduates through the Baby Bridge program, a program designed to support the children and families transition to home.
With her interest in executive functioning skills growing, Dr. Cheatham Oberle designed and implemented the Train Your Brain executive functioning skills program in 2018 as a one-week, half-day summer camp for children ages 9-12. The program has grown and now serves children and adolescents ages 9-16 for summer camp and is also run as an after-school program at an area school. Her work with Train Your Brain and at CID opened up opportunities for Dr. Cheatham Oberle to establish a scholarly lab in 2019 to mentor occupational therapy doctorate students through projects related to program development, implementation and evaluation. Dr. Cheatham Oberle was appointed to faculty in 2023.
Pineda, R., Guth, R., Herring, A., Reynolds, L., Oberle, S., & Smith, J. (2017). Enhancing sensory experiences for very preterm infants in the NICU: an integrative review. Journal of perinatology, 37(4), 323-332.
Pineda, R., Melchior, K., Oberle, S., Inder, T., & Rogers, C. (2015). Assessment of autism symptoms during the neonatal period: is there early evidence of autism risk?. The American Journal of Occupational Therapy, 69(4), 6904220010p1-6904220010p11.
Ranked as the Number Three OT Program in the Nation
We welcome inquiries from prospective students, potential collaborators, community partners, alumni and others who want to connect with us. Please complete the form below to begin the conversation.
Schedule an Info Session
We are excited that you are considering applying to the Program in Occupational Therapy at Washington University. Please join us for a Zoom Information Session for either our entry-level MSOT or OTD degrees or our online post-professional OTD. Current faculty members will discuss the Program and answer any question you may have. We are offering these sessions on the following days and times. The content is the same for each one, so you only need to sign up for one.
Upcoming ENTRY-LEVEL Degree Info sessions:
Upcoming PP-OTD Degree Info sessions: