Tara O'Brien

Tara O'Brien
First Name
Last Name
Assistant Professor
Assistant Director, Doctor of Nursing Education Program
393 Newton Hall
Address (Line 2)
295 W. 10th Ave.
Zip Code


Dr. Tara O’Brien is an assistant professor and early-stage principal investigator testing non-pharmacological real-time self-management interventions to promote health outcomes in kidney transplant recipients at The Ohio State University College of Nursing. Her research seeks to shift the paradigm of using printed materials to promote self-care, using wearable sensors, and working with health coaches. In prior work, she found that kidney transplant recipients using a multicomponent intervention for wearing an activity tracker, in combination with health coaching to monitor physical activity, had improved resting heart rates compared to a control group that only used the activity tracker.

Dr. O’Brien has 30 years of nursing experience working with underserved populations living with chronic disease in rural and urban communities. She brings 18 years of knowledge for integrating technology in the classroom to promote active learning and also using technology to achieve health goals in research. She has received over $400,000.00 in funding from the National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Nursing Research, International Transplant Nursing Society, American Nephrology Nurses Association, and Sigma Theta Tau International Honor Society of Nursing for her work targeting mobile technology to facilitate self-management after a kidney transplant. Dr. O’Brien received the Southern Nursing Research Society Aging Research Interest Group Rising Investigator Award in 2019, the Southern Nursing Research Society's Leadership in Research Award, the American Nephrology Nurses Association Outstanding Research Abstract Presentation in 2021 and 2023, and the 2024 Research Sharing Award, and the 2024 Medical University of South Carolina as the Emerging Leader Alumni Award.

Dr. O’Brien has been a certified nurse educator since 2010. She has received multiple teaching awards, including the 2019 Distinguished Educator in Gerontological Nursing Award from the Nati

Community Service
  • 2020-Present: Board of Directors Kidney Donor Conversations
  • 2018-Present: Ambassador Advocate for Lifeline of Ohio
  • 2018-Present: Community Volunteer for Lifeline of Ohio
Recent Research Activities
Funded Research Grants
Professional Activities


June 04, 2024

As wounded victims came pouring into the civilian hospital in Kharkov after the Ukraine war began in February 2022, Artem Riga initially was the only surgeon on duty. Some colleagues were fleeing the country and others were delayed because of the intense shelling. Doctors had to ration food and medical supplies, performing surgery in body armor, with sandbags on the windowsills of the operating room. A sudden attack significantly damaged his hospital and left patients covered in broken glass and other debris. Amid this chaos, Riga had to teach patients to care for their own wounds.

May 30, 2024

Jun becomes College of Nursing’s first-ever participant in fellowship hosted by UC Davis