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The Impact of Online Computer Games on Mental Health: Parents of Primary School Children Aged 8 to 12
Deaf and hard of hearing children (DHH) and children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) have been identified as having relations challenges and difficulties and mental health difficulties due to the function of the disability. This research is intended to provide a better understanding of the role of online computer games in the relationships skills and mental health problems of children with ASD and DHH. Contrary to expectation, previous studies suggest Minecraft might be helpful; this study will test that idea. We are interested in the views of parents or guardians of children with hearing difficulties. You’re invited to participate if: Your child has been diagnosed hearing loss. For your participation, you will complete an online questionnaire (20 to 40 minutes). If you would like to know more, please click here and read the Participant Information Sheet.
Participants will be included in a prize selection of an iPad mini 2 Wi-Fi 32GB.
Location: online survey

Talking Parents Survey

Location: Online Survey

The purpose of this study is to identify the social and language- based concerns of parents of children who have language impairments.

Fetal Exposure to Neuroactive Drugs and Folate (FEND-Folate Study)

Location: Online Survey

What reduction in autism spectrum incidence might be observed if the population was entirely unexposed to antiepileptic drugs during gestation, compared with its current exposure pattern? Human outcomes from well-controlled behavioral, histological and epidemiological studies are needed to identify the risks that this class of psychoactive drugs may pose to the development of autism spectrum and other pervasive developmental disorders when they interact with the fetus in the prenatal environment. This survey is designed to generate a preliminary database with improved power for generating hypotheses regarding attributable risk of autism spectrum outcomes given an exposure to neuroactive medication during gestation.

Brain Imaging of Intranasal Oxytocin Treatment in Autism

Location: Chapel Hill and Durham, NC

The ASPIRE team is currently conducting a research study involving children and adolescents (ages 10 - 17 years) with a diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder. This study is looking at the effects of an investigational medication on the brain. Oxytocin (nasal spray) is thought to help with social behaviors. This study is looking specifically at the effects of oxytocin vs. placebo on various brain activities. Participants will receive either one dose of oxytocin or one dose of placebo (saline solution with no medicine) followed by brain scans and behavioral assessments.

Accessibility to Health Care Services for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders

The study will examine accessibility to therapy services for children with autism on the west coast of Florida. Parents and caregivers of young children who live on the west coast of Florida are encouraged to complete a short survey which will take approximately 15 minutes to complete. The survey will either be emailed or mailed to the participants depending on their preference. Participants will have an opportunity to provide feedback to the researcher once the results of the study are analyzed.

Pursuing Happiness: An Investigation of Life Satisfaction in Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder

According to Schalock’s (2004) Emerging Disability Paradigm, researchers have an obligation to study positive traits of individuals with disabilities, including strengths, contributors to life satisfaction, and interventions to improve quality of life. This study seeks to assess strengths (e.g., gratitude, optimism, etc.) and life satisfaction in adolescents with autism spectrum disorder. The results of this study will provide preliminary information regarding the reliability and validity of positive measures with this population, as well as yield important information regarding strengths and well-being for this population.

Location: Online survey 

The Experiences of Hispanic Families of Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder Regarding Physical Activity and Communication: A Qualitative Study

The purpose of this study is to explore the physical activity and communication experiences of hispanic families of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder in Miami-Dade County, FL

Location: Syracuse, NY, Syracuse University

The long-term effects of early behavioral intervention services for children with autism

The purpose of this study is to investigate the long-term effects of Applied Behavioral Analysis for children with autism ages 6-18. This study hopes to gain insight on how long the benefits of ABA lasts for children with autism. The study will examine autism severity, adaptive behaviors, and current school placement. Parents will be participants in this study.

Location: survey by telephone, mailed rating scales 

AAC Preferences: A Qualitative Study Reflecting Adult Consumers

A limited number of research studies have assessed patient preference from a consumer’s point of view. Additional research is needed involving the user of the AAC device, as well as their family members in the decision making process (Baxter, Enderby, Evans & Judges, 2012). The gaps in the literature on preference from an adult consumer’s point of view motivate the aims of this qualitative study. An interview will be conducted based on interview questions that address gaps in the literature and will provide specific information related to consumer preference. The aims of this study are to provide adult perspective on AAC device preference and to investigate outcomes related to consumer involvement in AAC decision making.

Location: Online

ONLINE SURVEY: Study on Autism Childhood Interventions
We are looking for both (1) autistic adults and (2) parents of autistic children to take an online survey related to childhood experience with no interventions, or interventions such as ABA (Applied Behavior Analysis) or no ABA at all


Location: Online Survey

SOARS-B (Study of Oxytocin in Autism Reciprocal Social Behaviors)

The ASPIRE Program is currently conducting a research study involving children (ages 3-17 years) with a diagnosis of an autism spectrum disorder. The study is looking at an investigational medication called oxytocin. Oxytocin is administered in the form of a nasal spray. Participants will take fake medication (placebo) or active medication (oxytocin) for 6 months. After the initial 6 months, everyone will get to try the real medication (oxytocin). The study involves monthly visits to UNC. Thinking tests, physical exams, and blood tests are involved.

Location: Chapel Hill, NC - Boston, MA - Seattle, WA - New York, NY 

The Neurophysiology of Multisensory Speech Integration Across Development
The perception of speech is important for social communication and seeing the speaker is an important part of it. Seeing the speaker's face and lips can help us understand his or her message, especially when there is noise in the background. The process of putting together (or integrating) what we see and hear is called "multisensory integration". Multisensory integration is an ability that develops and improves throughout development.
The goal of this research project is to find out how the human brain manages to integrate what we see and hear and how this ability develops from childhood into adulthood. Another important goal is to find out if the brains of individuals on the Autism Spectrum integrate what they see and hear differently. Participants in this project will take part in experiments that measure brain activity while engaged in multisensory integration tasks. We will also conduct some psychological assessments and collect a saliva sample for genetic analysis.

Location:Bronx, NY 

Sensory Integration Therapy in Autism: Mechanisms and Effectiveness

Location: Bronx, NY

The study looks at the effectiveness of Sensory Integration Therapy (SIT) and Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) on improving functional skills in children with Autism. Diagnostic assessments and neurophysiology research are also conducted, in the hopes of identifying therapeutic effects on Autism severity and brain functioning.

Infant Sibling Autism Study

Location: Marcus Autism Center, Atlanta, GA

This study examines social engagement in babies with and without a risk of having an ASD. This study also looks at how social engagement influences speech and langugage development to help better understand communication in infants and toddlers. Additionally, this research will also help develop new methods for early identification and treatment for babies at risk for an ASD.

Having a Sibling with Moderate to Severe ASD:Adolescent Perspectives of the Impact on Friendships

This study’s purpose is to understand the meaning and effect of the sibling relationship on friendships and to gain greater insight concerning how having a sibling with autism potentially affects friendships during adolescence. This is a dissertation study and is being conducted as the final requirement of the researcher's PhD program.

Location: Chicagoland area, Illinois (in person)

Perseverance Screening for Autism Spectrum Disorders in Infants to Facilitate Earlier Identification

We will use perseveration to distinguish high- and low-risk ASD groups. Visual perseveration involves looking to recently attended locations that are unlikely to provide new information. Core symptoms of autism such as repetitive motion, narrowed interests, and missed social cues could have their foundation in perseveration.

We will develop the perseverance task into a screening tool. While we will recruit infants who have an older sibling with ASD and compare them to infants without relatives with ASD, future application includes the ability to test any infant to determine if (s)he has increased perseveration and, therefore, needs full assessment.

This will reduce disparities in when children are diagnosed. The strongest predictor of age of diagnosis is socioeconomic status and having a tool that could screen all infants would reduce disparities so that less affluent families have access to the intervention and services earlier.

LOCATION: Provo, UT or St. Louis, MO

URL: or



Autism, Caregiving, and Behaviors Study

Location: Telephone Interview

The goal of this telephone interview is to assess general family functioning, responsibilities of family members, and perceptions of adolescent behavior in families who have a male child with autism. Additionally, this study aims to assess autism severity levels in children with autism using a new measure and to examine perception of adolescent behaviors.

Autism Research Studies in Speech and Language

Locations: Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions (Baltimore, Fells Point, New York)

This research is being done to better understand and improve communication, speech, language, behavior and related abilities of individuals with autism and related conditions. The study involves clinical and research tasks designed to measure and to try to improve skills that are fundamental to communication abilities. These may include perceptual (auditory and visual), motor, and conceptual skills and behavioral functions such as activities of daily living, attentiveness, and

Autism Genetics Network, Phase II: Increasing Representation in Human Diversity

Location: Bronx, NY

The study looks at the genetics of Autism, and issues surrounding diagnosis and access to care, in the African American population. African American children with Autism are vastly underrepresented in Autism research. We hope to help reduce this disparity and deepen our understanding of the genetic aspects of Autism in the African American population, in the hope that it will lead to earlier diagnosis and better treatment options.

Neurobehavioral Research on Infants at Risk for Language Delay and ASD

Despite tremendous advances being made in our understanding of autism spectrum disorder (ASD}, the average age of diagnosis of an ASD in the United States is >3 years of age, although in some cases a reliable diagnosis can be made as young as 18 months. Given the value of early intervention. it is imperative we identify children who will be diagnosed with an ASD as early in life as possible. Our goal is to find signs that suggest risk tor this disorder between infants with an older sibling with an autism spectrum disorder, typically developing infants, and those displaying developmental concern based on early differences detected on a screening tool

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