Pamela Saunders, Ph.D.

Dr. Saunders

Associate Professor

Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry
Georgetown University School of Medicine

Chief Director

Doctoring Curriculum


Communications Course


Geriatrics Clerkship
Departments of Neurology and Psychiatry
Georgetown University School of Medicine

4000 Reservoir Road, NW, Suite 207
Washington, DC 20057

Phone: 202-784-4771


Pamela A. Saunders, PhD, is an associate professor in the departments of neurology and psychiatry. With a doctorate in sociolinguistics from Georgetown University, her research focuses on language, aging, doctor/patient communication, narrative and reflective writing, and medical education. Her research portfolio includes funding from the Alzheimer’s Association, the National Institute on Aging, the Hartford Foundation, the Association for Standardized Patient Educators, and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. She serves in several leadership roles related to medical education, including as chief course director of the doctoring curriculum and coclerkship director of the geriatrics clerkship. She is a longstanding member of Georgetown University Medical Center’s Committee on Medical Education and also serves on the Committee on Appointments and Promotions. She cofounded the geriatrics curriculum in 2000 for the medical students at Georgetown’s School of Medicine with funding from the Hartford Foundation. In addition, she teaches qualitative research methods, reflective writing, and Mind Body Medicine skills to medical and graduate students.

Research Summary

My research at Georgetown has focused on the interaction between people in the clinical setting. I explore the communication behaviors of both the clinician and the patient in constructing the clinical encounter. I am interested in exploring how training providers to communicate better with their patients.

Research Interests

Language, Communication, Doctor-Patient Interaction, Communication Training of Clinicians, Students, and Caregivers, Dementia, Medical Education, Narrative Medicine.