Faculty Profiles

Ryan Olson, PhD

Associate Professor, Oregon Institute Of Occupational Health Sciences
Assistant Professor, OHSU-PSU School of Public Health
Adjunct faculty, PSU Occupational Health Psychology Program

Read more about Dr. Olson's research

Media Inquiries: To request an interview with Dr. Olson, please write or call OHSU media relations at news@ohsu.edu or 503-494-8231


Dr. Olson's research is focused on safety and health interventions for lone workers, and
on behavioral self-management methods. The overreaching goal of this research is to
understand how organizations can best protect and promote health among workers who
are physically isolated from peers. Dr. Olson has extensive experience conducting injury
prevention and health promotion research in transportation industries (aviation, bus,
trucking), but also has current projects in home health care and long-term care industries.

Go to Dr. Olson's Lab page→

See Dr. Olson's CV→

SHIFT (Safety & Health Involvement For Truckers)

SHIFT is a weight loss and health promotion intervention for truck drivers. The intervention is a weight loss competition that is supported with computer-based training, weekly weight and behavior logging, and motivational interviewing.  Olson and his collaborators are currently conducting a randomized controlled trial of the effectiveness of the SHIFT program with funding from the NHLBI (R01HL105495).

COMPASS (Community of Practice and Safety Support) Teams for Home Care Workers

COMPASS is a Total Worker Health Intervention that is being developed and studied as part of the Oregon Healthy Workforce Center funded by NIOSH.  COMPASS uses a peer-led curriculum to organize home care workers into neighborhood-based teams that provide education and social support for improving lifestyle (e.g., diet, exercise) and safety behaviors.  For more detail visit the COMPASS project description at the Oregon Healthy Workforce Center website.

OR-FACE (Oregon Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation)

The Oregon Occupational Fatality Assessment and Control Evaluation (OR-FACE) Program is a National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) sponsored program designed to prevent occupational fatalities through surveillance, targeted investigation, assessment, and outreach associated with traumatic work-related deaths in Oregon.

Work, Family, and Health Network iPod/iPhone Application

The Work, Family, and Health Network, funded by NICHD and NIOSH is evaluating an intervention to reduce work-family conflict and improve employee health in long-term care and instructional technology industries.  Drs. Olson and Wipfli designed the weSupport iPod/iPhone application used by supervisors at intervention worksites (programmed by  Openmetrics).  Click on the weSupport iPod/iPhone Application Demonstration to see the basic features of the software. 


Dr. Olson earned his bachelors degree in Psychology at Utah State University and advanced degrees in Industrial and Organizational Psychology and Applied Behavior Analysis at Western Michigan University. Dr. Olson was an Assistant Professor of Psychology at Santa Clara University prior to joining the CROET/OHSU faculty in July of 2005.   Dr. Olson is a member of the editorial board for the Journal of Organizational Behavior Management and a charter member of the Society of Occupational Health Psychology.


WeSupport iPod/iPhone Application Demonstration


PSU Occupational Health Psychology Program

Olson Lab: Occupational Health Psychology Lab



Recent Occupational Safety & Health Publications

Olson, R., Thompson, S. V., Wipfli, B., Hanson, G., Elliot, D. L., Anger, W. K., Bodner, T., Hammer, L. B., Hohn,E., and Perrin, N. A. (in press). Sleep, dietary, and exercise behavioral clusters among truck drivers with obesity: Implications for interventions. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

Gurubhagavatula, I., Patil, S., Meoli, A.,  Olson, R., Sullivan, S., Berneking, M., Watson, N. F. (2016). Sleep apnea
evaluation of commercial motor vehicle operators. Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, 12(3), 285–286.

Olson, R., Wright, R. R., Elliot, D., Hess, J., Thompson, S., Buckmaster, A., Luther, K., and Wipfli, B. (2015). The COMPASS Pilot Study: A Total Worker HealthTM Intervention for Home Care Workers. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, 57 (4), 406-416.

Anger, W. Kent; Elliot, Diane L.; Bodner, Todd; Olson, Ryan; Rohlman, Diane S.; Truxillo, Donald M.; Kuehl,Kerry S.; Hammer, Leslie B.; Montgomery, Dede. Effectiveness of Total Worker Health Interventions. Journal of Occupational Health Psychology, 2015, 20(2), 226–247.

Olson, R., Crain, T. L., Bodner, T. E., King, R. Hammer, L., Klein, L., Erickson, L., Moen, P. Berkman, L. and Buxton , O. M. (2015). A workplace intervention improves actigraphic sleep duration in a randomized,
controlled trial: Results from the Work, Family, and Health Network Study. Sleep Health, 1, 55-65.

Olson, R., Elliot, D., Hess, J., Thompson, S., Luther, K., Wipfli, B., Wright, R., Buckmaster, A. M. (2014). The COMmunity of Practice And Safety Support (COMPASS) total worker health™ study among home care workers: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial. Trials, 15: 411, 1-13.