About Dr. Miriam Monahan and Driver Rehabilitation Institute

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Get to Know Miriam Monahan


Miriam Monahan is the founder and director of the Driver Rehabilitation Institute

Dr. Monahan is a licensed Occupational Therapist and Certified Driving Rehabilitation Specialist. Dr. Monahan has been practicing in the field of driver rehabilitation since 1998 in a variety of settings including hospitals, private practice, academia, and research.

Dr. Monahan has worked with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, University of Florida, Western University of Ontario, and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s Center for Injury Research and Prevention among others on specific projects.  Her research and scholarly work focus on interventions to assist individuals with neurological conditions such as stroke, autism, and PTSD, as well as beginner drivers.

The Driver Rehabilitation Institute’s board of directors bring valuable expertise in the areas of social science research, business, non-profit fundraising, rehabilitation, accounting, and technology.

A Brief History of Driver Rehabilitation Institute


Visual Search program begins

Looking and seeing
The visual search skills program was developed. Miriam was working with a client with a mild traumatic brain injury who was occasionally missing important roadway information. Miriam realized that many of her clients with a variety of conditions such as autism, Parkinson's disease, and others needed a tool to help them search the road more efficiently.

Supporting clients and researchers

Clinical and research

Driver Rehabilitation Institute (DRI) was founded in Vermont. We saw clients in our driver rehabilitation program. Clients with visual, cognitive, and physical needs were provided with assessment and training interventions. We provided a testing site for the University of Minnesota study on brain injury and driving.


2006 Autism and Driving Workshop

Assessment and training

DRI provides its first autism and driving workshop at The Association for Driver Rehabilitation Specialists. The approach of a potential to drive evaluation and unique training is new to the field.


Drive Focus is launched.

After 3 years of development, Drive Focus is launched. DRI creates an innovative technology of making fast moving objects in a video clickable. This first version of Drive Focus is available on iPads and has video content from Vermont, South Carolina, and Quebec.

First studies on Drive Focus are Published

New driver and learner drivers

First study on Drive Focus is conducted at Western University of Ontario. The findings indicate that six 1-hour sessions on Drive Focus improves visual scanning and driving errors when tested on a driving simulator.


Android version is launched

We have arrived at Google Play

The Android version is developed with the same concepts of clickable videos, but with a lot of enhancements for improving scores.

We created User Analytics for Drive Focus with rehabilitation settings, driving schools, and research institutes in mind. User Analytics provides detail scoring information to target instruction or intervention.

Launched our first series of the Potential to Drive workshops in Australia with Driving Well OT


Australian Road Safety Technology Award

Drive Focus adds Australian content

Australian content for Drive Focus is created. Driving Well OT in Brisbane collaborated with Driver Rehabilitation Institute to provide Australian content and expertise to Drive Focus. They won the Australian Road Safety Technology Award for bringing the Drive Focus app to Australia.


Grant award

NIH Small Business Research Innovation grant
Minnesota Health Solutions and Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia are awarded an National Insitute of Health Small Business Innovation Research grant to improve the training section of Drive Focus for autistic learners.

Dr. Miriam Monahan

Dr. Monahan founded the Driver Rehabilitation Institute in 2005 to further research, education, and innovation in the field of driver rehabilitation. In 2013, she co-developed Drive Focus, a cognitive training tool that assists individuals with neurological conditions such as stroke, autism, and PTSD, as well as beginner drivers.

Dr. Monahan lectures and consults extensively on the topic of driver rehabilitation, both locally and internationally to medical professionals, government agencies, law enforcement, educational institutions and others. She has (co)authored numerous peer-reviewed publications and textbook chapters on various aspects of driver rehabilitation. She has (co)authored multiple courses for The Association for Driver Rehabilitation Specialists, Driving Well OT (Australia), and the American Occupational Therapy Association on the topic of driving for adolescents with special needs.

Dr. Monahan has also served as public relations chair for the Association for Driver Rehabilitation Specialists (ADED). She has participated in National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration (NHTSA) funded projects to educate law enforcement personnel about the impact of medical conditions on driving. She has also developed guidelines for state motor vehicle departments on medical conditions and driving.

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Publications and CV

Click the icons below to see Dr. Monahan's publications and CV

Drive Focus App

The first research-based driver training app that takes your driving to the next level. Enhance your reaction speed and road awareness, sharpening your ability to detect and respond to real-world driving scenarios. Build confidence behind the wheel every time you use it. 

Frequently Asked Questions

I did not receive an email verification. What do I do?

If you have not received the email verification in your inbox after 3 minutes, check your spam or junk folder.

  • In your Spam or Junk Folder, look for a message with a subject line that says No-Reply.
  • When you find it indicate that it is not spam or junk. That will move the message into your in-box and allow you to Verify your account or enable your Forgot Password request.

Drive Focus is not compatible with any phones because the screen size is too small.

Drive Focus is compatible with these devices: iPads, Android tablets, Amazon Fire Tablets, MacBooks with M1 chips, Chromebooks, Windows 11, and Apple Vision Pro. If you don’t have access to one of these devices and cost is a consideration, we recommend Amazon Fire Tablets, Android tablets, and Google Chromebooks.

In addition to the volume control on your tablet, there are two other things that affect the sound.

1. When taking a Drive, you can adjust roadway and background sound volume using the slider bar.



2. You can also turn on and off the roadway sounds and the acknowledgement chimes and beeps in the Drive Focus app settings 

Use the biggest screen you can. Here’s why:

When you use Drive Focus, you are looking at the road from the perspective of a driver. If you are using a small screen, it will be difficult to pick out things that are far away from the driver, like an upcoming traffic light or sign.

We do not recommend screens smaller than 10 inches or 25.4cm.

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What Our Users Say

I tell all my beginner drivers about drive focus. It is especially helpful for students are missing important things or hazards.  My students have told me: I think it’s great!. It’s smooth & simple. It was helpful for learning to drive! It wasn’t glitchy or buggy, where I clicked actually works.
Testimonial Mary Frances3
Maryfrances Gross
University of Kentucky 
As a clinician in a neuro clinic, I use Drive Focus with many of my patients. It's a terrific home program with objective feedback on speed of processing and visual attention. Patients love that it looks like driving and enjoy trying to improve their scores.
Testimonial Beth2
Beth Rolland
Upstate University Hospital of Syracuse
Drive Focus has been well received by Australian Occupational Therapists at two national conferences and during many workshops, with excitement about the opportunities for our clients and their driving. My clients find it easy and fun to use. It was a privilege to support Drive Focus with recording the Melbourne videos.
Testimonial Megan
Megan Coulter
Occupational Therapist
Drive Focus has taken Australia by storm! Driving Well OT in Brisbane collaborated with Miriam to bring Drive Focus to Australia, winning the Australian Road Safety Foundation award in 2021. It’s worldwide OT conference premier was in Melbourne (“Mel-bin”!) in June 2022, with OTs being excited and impressed by the impact Drive Focus can have on clients with executive functioning disorders who want to learn or return to driving. Affordable, accessible, brain-training for driving!
Testimonial Jenny
Jenny Gribbin
Occupational Therapist
I recommend Drive Focus to patients who have had strokes, brain injuries, cognitive or visual processing limitations and students with special needs exploring if they are ready to drive. Drive Focus is motivating because it looks like driving. After using Drive Focus my clients are much more relaxed and prepared for driving.
Heather Shields
Owner Pathways Rehabilitation Services, LLC
Drive Focus is the best first step available to assist people who need help learning to drive and lack access to professional assistance.
Testimonial Bryson
My daughter, who is on the autism spectrum, used Drive Focus to help prepare for behind the wheel driving lessons. Her ability to recognize and prioritize signals, traffic, and potential hazards increased dramatically. She enjoyed the app and gained a lot of self-confidence.
Testimonial Kim
I love using Drive Focus with my clients recovering from strokes to work on scanning and processing activities in preparation for driving. I also use Drive Focus with inexperienced drivers to get ready to learn to drive. The app is easy to use, very affordable, and the visuals are great!
Susie Touchinsky
Adaptive Mobility Services, LLC
I highly recommend Drive Focus to help prepare a student to get behind the wheel of a car. I went from not knowing where to look while driving to being able to recognize the most important things for a driver to notice. It doesn't get boring because of the different cities that you drive through as you improve.
Testimonial Gwen 1
Drive Focus
Become the confident driver you’ve always wanted to be
Drive Focus