Ongoing Studies

PI: Katarzyna Chawarska, Ph.D. Funding Source: National Institute of Mental Health.

This study examines the social development of younger siblings of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Our research will lead to a better understanding of the mechanisms involved in the development of symptoms of ASD in infancy and will help to identify new methods of diagnosing and treating young children with ASD. To participate, click here

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PI: Katarzyna Chawarska, Ph.D. Funding Source: National Institute of Mental Health. 

This study examines emotional attention, reactivity, and regulation in toddlers with ASD. This project will advance our understanding of the unique contribution of emotional disturbance to core and comorbid symptoms of ASD and suggest mechanisms that may illuminate the role of emotional attention difficulties in the etiology of autism. To participate, click here

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PI: Katarzyna Chawarska, Ph.D. Funding Source: Defense Medical Research and Development Program.

This study investigates the factors that affect the ability to monitor faces of interactive partners in toddlers with ASD. The discovery of such factors will help us design more targeted and individualized interventions for young children with ASD. To participate, click here

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PIs: Frederick Shic, Ph.D. & Katarzyna Chawarska, Ph.D. Funding Source: National Institute of Mental Health.

This study investigates the use of adaptive eye-tracking technology for helping toddlers with ASD allocate their attention to people and their actions in a more typical fashion. Considering that attention to interactive partners is critical for the development of social skills and observational learning, improving attentional strategies in young children with ASD may lead to better social and cognitive outcomes. To participate, click here.  

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PI: Suzanne Macari, Ph.D. Funding Source: National Institute of Mental Health.

In this study, we examine the origins of increased attention to objects and decreased attention to people in toddlers with ASD. Specifically, this project assesses the role of perceptual processes in the looking patterns and visual exploration of toddlers with ASD, shedding light on the mechanisms that underlie their deficits in attention to social stimuli in everyday situations. To participate, click here

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PIs: Frederick Shic, Ph.D. & Katarzyna Chawarska, Ph.D. 

The focus of this study is to develop a multimedia early screening system for autism in the context of routine pediatric check-ups. This study aims to address the disparities in the availability and accessibility of screening systems to families from under-resourced communities. 

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PI: Quan Wang, Ph.D. Funding Source: Autism Speaks Meixner Postdoctoral Fellowship in Translational Research.

Mentors: Frederick Shic & Katarzyna Chawarska

In this study, we investigate the ability of toddlers with ASD to make associations between their own eye movements and external events in both nonsocial and social contexts, with the goal of teaching children with ASD the social importance of the gaze cues. To participate, click here

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PI: Katarzyna Chawarska, Ph.D. Funding Source: The V&L Marx Foundation.

This study examines school-age developmental and psychiatric outcomes of younger siblings of children with ASD. Through this project, we hope to map their complex clinical and neurobehavioral phenotypes and to identify their predictors in infancy and early childhood. 

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PI: Laura Boccanfuso, Ph.D. Funding Source: National Science Foundation. 

This research presents a novel, robot-assisted approach for studying the response to, and recognition of, emotion in very young children with ASD. The goal is to establish whether embodied social interactions between preschoolers with ASD and non-humanoid robots during free play can improve emotion recognition. To participate, click here

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