Dr. Nelson is a licensed psychologist specializing in Parent-Child Interaction Therapy (PCIT).
She received her PhD in clinical child psychology at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and completed an APA-approved internship at Wayne State University in Detroit. She also completed a 3-year post-doctoral fellowship at the University of Florida (UF) with Dr. Sheila Eyberg, developer of PCIT. Dr. Nelson joined the faculty at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center (OUHSC), where she specialized in PCIT practice, training, and research from 2005-2012. She joined the faculty at the University of Florida, Department of Psychiatry, Division of Medical Psychology in 2014.
Dr. Nelson has been a PCIT trainer since 2005, when she first co-trained with Dr. Sheila Eyberg. Then, while on faculty at OUHSC, Dr. Nelson co-directed the PCIT Training program with Dr. Beverly Funderburk and Dr. Robin Gurwitch, training hundreds of therapists across the United States (and internationally).
In 2009, Dr. Nelson was certified as a Master Trainer by PCIT International and, in 2013, she joined the PCIT International Board of Directors as Treasurer. She also has extensive experience in conducting treatment outcome research, grant administration, and program development, having served as PI on a 6-year PCIT training grant funded by the Oklahoma Department of Mental Health and having been project coordinator and co-investigator on several large, federally funded PCIT projects.
Dr. Nelson is a co-author of the Dyadic Parent-Child Interaction Coding System (DPICS) – 3rd and 4th edition manuals, which guide the behavioral observation coding system used in PCIT. Dr. Nelson is one of the foremost trainers on this coding system, and she has developed a comprehensive training curriculum and materials to guide PCIT therapists to mastery of the DPICS coding system.