Dr. Devine earned her BA in psychology at DePauw University, and then her MA and PhD in clinical psychology at Bowling Green State University in Ohio. She completed her clinical internship at the Boston VA Medical Center/Tufts University Consortium and then completed a three-year postdoctoral program in clinical neuropsychology, providing services to veterans and civilians with a wide range of neurological and psychiatric disorders. Dr. Devine has worked in a research setting since completing her postdoctoral work, and she has also worked intermittently in clinical settings, evaluating individuals with a variety of cognitive disorders. These clients have been as young as 12, but Dr. Devine’s primary interest is in a geriatric population.
In 1999, Dr. Devine started working as a clinical neuropsychologist at the Framingham Heart Study (FHS), where research on cognitive functioning was greatly expanding. Through the years, she has collaborated with Dr. Rhoda Au in applying the Boston Process Approach (BPA) to research using neuropsychological tests. BPA goes beyond the typically used quantitative scores, adding the wealth of information available in qualitative aspects of an individual’s performance on cognitive tests. Although widely used in clinical settings, research using BPA is severely limited, given the challenges of operationalizing qualitative aspects of an individual’s behavior while taking cognitive tests. Dr. Devine has especially enjoyed this challenge, as well as providing training and supervision to testers to ensure reliable and consistent coding of behavior. This has been important because of the large number of testers who have been involved with FHS over the years. In addition to BPA generally, Dr. Devine been especially interested in examining the extensive information that can be gleaned from the Clock Drawing Test, a quick and simple task that involves asking an individual to draw a clock and set the hands to a specified time, and to copy a pre-drawn clock. Dr. Devine is involved with the research at FHS into identification of cognitive biomarkers, especially those caught digitally (i.e., with audio recorders and digital pens), that may reveal risk in the very early (i.e., pre- pre-clinical) stages of dementia.