AtteND Lab

We Need Your Help!

As you know, the National Institutes of Health and various private foundations spend many millions of dollars each year to fund research with goal of unraveling the mystery of autism and promoting the development of more effective treatments. However, such funding would be meaningless were it not for the willingness of families like yours to participate in research studies. We therefore ask for your help in our new research studies that aim to understand the brain bases of autism spectrum disorder.
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Frequently Asked Questions:

Is my child able to participate?
Study participation is generally based on a child's age and/or their diagnosis, when applicable. We need both individuals with and without autism to participate. If you are interested in participating, please contact our lab and we will talk with you about whether your child meets the inclusion criteria for our studies.

How long does a visit normally take and how many visits are required?
Most last about 2-3 hours, though some require a longer period of time. Most families find participation enjoyable and interesting. We will explain in detail what will take place during the session if you decide to participate with your child.

What should I expect when I come in to participate with my children?
A researcher will be waiting at our parking garage to greet you and escort you and your child to our lab. First you fill out some forms, and then we will make our way to one of our study rooms where we will do a series of games or activities. The particular game your child will play, depends on the research question we are interested in. For more information about studies we are currently running, see our research page. Typically, children enjoy participating in our research, as many of our studies are presented as games and children receive one-on-one attention.

When are appointments scheduled?
We will try our hardest to find a time that works well for you. Studies are typically scheduled Monday through Friday between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m., but occasionally, we conduct our studies outside of that time frame.

Do you pay families to participate in studies?
Yes, we offer monetary compensation for your time and travel expenses, and provide free parking.

What are event-related potentials (ERPs)?
The brain contains billions of cells. When these cells communicate with each other they produce electrical activity. This electrical activity spreads throughout the head and can be non-invasively recorded from the scalp using sensors. Recording this electrical activity for a continuous period of time is called the electroencephalogram or EEG. The ERP reflects the brain's response to a specific event, such as the presentation of a picture or sound. This method allows for us to present different pictures and examine the brain’s response to each type of picture.

Will participating in an ERP study harm my child?
EEG has been used to examine brain activity in infants, children, and adults for over 30 years. It is a safe, non-invasive method for measuring brain activity.

Where is the AtteND Lab located?
We are located on the 3rd floor of Lyles-Porter Hall. Click here for a map and directions.

More questions? Feel free to send us an email and we'll be happy to answer them for you!