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Research Requests

Aspergers Victoria regularly receives requests from researchers to advertise opportunities for our members to be participants in their research projects. Listed below are current projects. Please ensure you investigate the requirements carefully before deciding to be involved.
If you are a Researcher and have an authorised research study that is relevant to what we do, our members and which may be appropriate for us to publicise on our website, please complete the Research Request form and send an email to the Research Volunteer with a copy of the ethics approval associated with the research. We will consider your request and respond to you as soon as possible. We would also appreciate you forwarding us the report or summary at the end of your project, so we may inform our members of the outcome of the research projects they may participate in.

Current Research Seeking Participants

What Impacts the Mental Health and Wellbeing of Autistic Adults?

The purpose of this study is to identify risk and protective factors that may impact the mental health and wellbeing of autistic adults (including anxiety, depression and autistic burnout) to inform supports that will improve the quality of life of autistic adults.

Who is conducting this research?

PhD candidate Jane Mantzalas under the supervision of Professors Amanda Richdale and Cheryl Dissanayake

Who is eligible to participate?

Diagnosed and self-identifying autistic adults of any gender who are aged 18 years and above. Participants must be proficient in English, not have an intellectual disability, and must have access to the internet.

What does participating involve?

Participants will be required to complete an anonymous survey that takes approximately 45 minutes. Participants can take breaks if they need to.

After submitting the completed survey, participants can choose to enter a prize draw to win 1 of 5 vouchers ($50 AUD Coles for Australian residents and $35 USD Amazon voucher for international residents)

How will this research help people with Aspergers / autistic people?

Learning more about predictors of mental health and wellbeing will inform supports to improve the quality of life of autistic adults.

How can I register to participate?

Go to the Participant Information and Consent page for this study on the Latrobe University website

Where can I find further information?

Email the researcher, Jane Mantzalas: j.mantzalas@latrobe.edu.au

Recruitment closes: 31 January, 2022

Experiences of mental healthcare in Australia for autistic and non-autistic adults

The researchers aim to  investigate participants' experiences of mental healthcare and the barriers they have experienced to getting good care. We also want to know what participants recommend for improving mental healthcare in Australia.

Who is conducting this research?

Robyn Ball, Clinical Psychologist and PhD Candidate, Olga Tennison Autism Research Centre, LaTrobe University.

Who is eligible to participate?

Adults aged 18+ who live in Australia and have experienced mental health difficulties at any point in their life.

They can be non-autistic or autistic (self-identifying or diagnosed) and they do not need to have used any mental healthcare services.

Participants need sufficient written English skills to complete an online survey.

What does participating involve?

Participants will be asked to complete an online survey which takes approximately 45 minutes. Participants can take breaks and complete the survey in stages if they wish.

To participate in the study

Go to the Experiences of mental healthcare survey - participant information and consent form

How to find further information:

Email Robyn Ball: robynchristine.ball@latrobe.edu.au

Recruitment closes: 30 March 2022

Neurocognitive predictors of everyday fluctuations in mental health in autism

The aim of this study is to investigate how social cognition is linked with emotion regulation and mental health problems. It is hoped that this information will lead to a better understanding of the unique predictors of mental health in those with ASD, and promote the development of new interventions and tools for reducing the risk of poorer mental health in ASD

Who is conducting this research?
Deakin University

Who is eligible to participate?
Young adults (18-30 yrs)

What does participating involve?
Participants will complete an online assessment via Zoom (demographic data, questionnaires and cognitive tests) with the researcher, and will be asked to use our youth-friendly app for a period of 15 days to record daily emotional changes. Participants will do this four times each day, and each time it will only take less than one minute to reply.
Participants will receive a $60 voucher after participating. 

To participate in the study or find further information:
Contact Dr Natalia Albein Urios - Email: natalia.albeinurios@deakin.edu.au. Phone no: +61 92517813

Recruitment closes: May 2022

Does the National Disability Insurance Scheme support the quality of life of parents of children with autism spectrum disorder? A Thematic Analysis.

The current project aims to discover the impact the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) funding has on supporting the quality of life of parents of children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD).

Who is conducting this research?
Mr Jesse Gerhard (Student Researcher) and Dr Sharon Grant (Project Supervisor)

Who is eligible to participate?
Mothers, fathers, and primary carers of children with a formal diagnosis of ASD, of any level of severity (children must be under 18 years old, reside with their caregiver, and currently receive NDIS funding).

What does participating involve?
Participants are invited to partake in a semi-structured interview that will last approximately 50 minutes. Interview questions will relate to how the child's NDIS funding has impacted on the participant's own quality of life, in relation to their physical health, psychological health, social relationships, and living environment.
Participants will have the option of being interviewed via telephone, CoViu (a telehealth video-conferencing platform), or face-to-face at the Hawthorn Campus, at Swinburne University.
Benefits of participation may include parents having the opportunity to voice their experiences and be listened to in an empathic and non-judgemental way by the Student Researcher. In relation to this, research has indicated that participants can find in-depth interviewing about emotive topics a helpful and, in same instances, therapeutic experience. In terms of benefits to the community, findings of the study may provide valuable incentive for further quantitative research to be conducted in this area, and incentivise governing bodies to improve supports offered to caregivers of NDIS recipients.

To participate in the study or find further information:

      Contact Jesse Gerhard - Email: jgerhard@swin.edu.au. Phone no: 0411 405 303

      Recruitment closes: April 2022

      Autistic parents' experiences of home-school partnerships

      Autistic parents and students have different experiences of education - we need to know more about this!
      We would like to better understand the experiences of autistic parents, students, and their teachers in Australian educational settings (from kindergarten through to secondary schooling). We hope to gain knowledge about the types of supports and strategies needed to improve such relationships in the future. Autistic researchers are on the project team.

      Who is conducting this research?
      Professor Liz Pellicano and Dr Stacey Rabba together with Positive Partnerships and a team of autistic and non-autistic researchers at Macquarie University
      This research project is being led by an advisory group that includes autistic adults, with a range of backgrounds and experiences.
      Gabrielle is the autistic research assistant in this study and will be conducting the interviews with the autistic parents.

      Who is eligible to participate?
      Autistic parents who also have a child/children with a diagnosis of autism, who are currently engaged in education, including in kindergarten, primary school, high-school or home-schooling.
      Young autistic people themselves, if possible.
      Teachers who educate children with a diagnosis of autism.

      What does participating involve?
      We are conducting interviews (via Zoom, email, phone) with autistic parents, students and the teachers who teach autistic children.
      Completing a 10-minute background questionnaire
      Participating in a 1-hour interview for parents, and approximately half-hour interview for students and teachers.

      To participate in the study:
      If you're an autistic parent or student who wants to share your experiences, please email Stacey at stacey.rabba@mq.edu.au for an interview with an autistic researcher.

      Where can I find further information?
      For more information email research fellow, Dr Stacey Rabba at stacey.rabba@mq.edu.au

      Closing date: October 2021

      Knowing Me, Knowing You: Understanding social behaviour in autistic and neurotypical teens

      Researchers at LaTrobe University are investigating how autistic and non-autistic teenagers think about their social world and how this interacts with their mood. We hope to understand how different teens understand and engage in their world; along with what sort of thinking and behavioural processes they use in their day to day lives.

      Who is conducting this research?
      Daniel Berends, with Prof. Kristelle Hurdy and Dr Cathy Bent at La Trobe University

      Who is eligible to participate?
      Autistic and non-autistic teens aged between 12 and 17 attending mainstream school, and a parent/guardian

      What does participating involve?
      Teens and their guardians complete separate online surveys. These will take approximately 30 minutes.
      Survey participants will have the chance to win a $20 voucher!
      Participants can also opt to be selected for an interview (1 hour via Zoom). This will follow the survey topics and be done with a parent. Participants selected for interview will receive a $30 voucher as a thanks for their time.

      To participate in the study:
      If you are interested in being involved, please let us know at: www.latrobe.edu.au/CAPteam-studies

      Where can I find further information?
      For more information please contact Daniel Berends at d.berends@latrobe.edu.au

      Closing date: early 2022 (Jan-Feb)

      A randomised controlled trial of cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia in children on the autism spectrum

      This study evaluates a brief non-pharmalogical intervention to improve your child's sleep. 

      Who is conducting this research?
      Dr Michelle Short, the chief researcher at Flinders University

      Who is eligible to participate?
      7-12 year old children with an autism spectrum disorder and co-occurring sleep problems (insomnia)

      What does participating involve?
      Participation will involve:
      A telephone screening interview
      Completing questionnaires
      Monitoring your child's sleep with sleep diaries
      Attending 3 individual therapy sessions, which will be conducted over the internet via Telehealth
      There is no cost to participate in the program.

      Where can I find further information?
      If you would like to receive more information about the study via email, or to arrange a time to complete the screening interview, please contact Dr Michelle Short at sleep.autism@flinders.edu.au.

      Closing date: June 2022

      Person-first versus identity-first language: Informing client-centred care

      There has been previous debate about the appropriate way to address and refer to people with a disability or health condition, with relation to the use of person-first language (e.g. person with a disability) and identity first language (e.g. disabled person), and whether the use of person-first versus identity-first language is considered more or less appropriate for use by people with different roles, such as: a person with a disability/chronic illness, a medical or allied health professional, a family member or carer, the media, a person of the general population, an educator or a researcher. This research will assess whether person-first or identity-first language preference is dependent on disability or health condition severity or disability identity, as well as any association between person-first or identity-first preference and quality of life. This research is important to expand the understanding about how people with disabilities or chronic health conditions prefer to be referenced, as well as factors that may influence preferences.

      Who is conducting this research?
      Dr Lisa Grech and Dr Amanda Olley from Monash University (Lisa) and Charles Sturt University (both)

      Who is eligible to participate?
      People who self-identify as having a disability or health condition, regardless of the type of disability or health condition.
      The research is open to all people of an age and/or capacity that enables them to understand the requirements and complete the online survey.
      People without a disability or health condition, including family, friends and carers of a person with a disability or health condition, are not eligible to participate. 

      What does participating involve?
      Participants are asked to complete a questionnaire that will take approximately 10-15 minutes. The questionnaire can be completed at a time that suits you from a location of your choosing, provided you have access to an internet connection. The questionnaire will ask about your preference for use of person-first and identity-first language, as well as questions about your level of acceptance and how much you identify with your disability or health condition, as well as about your quality of life.
      To participate in the study:
      Survey link: https://monash.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_er1v2XcWADDa62O

      Where can I find further information?
      Via the survey link: https://monash.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_d9UwIF37anUeFls
      For any further questions please contact Dr Lisa Grech: lisa.grech@monash.edu, or phone: 0410 947 444

      Closing date: 30 November, 2021

      Factors contributing to higher education success

      Researchers at La Trobe University are seeking volunteer research participants to be involved in a study about the higher education experiences of students in Australia and New Zealand.
      We're wanting to learn more about the predictors of success, and barriers to accessing supports for students with, and without, neurodiverse conditions such as autism, Aspergers, ADHD, and dyslexia. It is expected that this research will contribute to improving the supports provided to neurodiverse students in higher education, and thus increase their opportunities to succeed in their education.

      Who is conducting this research?
      Lyndel Kennedy and Professor Amanda Richdale at La Trobe University
      Neurodivergent advisors are providing guidance on this research project.

      Who is eligible to participate?
      You are currently enrolled at a university, technical and further education (TAFE), institute of technology and polytechnic (ITP) or postsecondary college in Australia or New Zealand, (currently studying or deferred) or
      You were studying at a university, technical and further education (TAFE), institute of technology and polytechnic (ITP) or postsecondary college in the past five years.
      You are aged 18 years or older
      Please note, you do not need to have a neurodiverse condition to participate.

      What does participating involve?
      Complete an anonymous online survey, using your own computer or device. The survey takes approximately 30-45 minutes.

      Will I be paid to take part in the research study?
      There are no costs associated with participation in this research study, nor will you be paid. However, you may choose to enter into a one-in-five chance draw to win an AUD$25 (for Australian residents) or US$20 (for New Zealand residents) Amazon gift voucher on completion of the survey.

      To participate in the study:
      Access the survey via this link: https://redcap.link/latrobe.HENDS

      Where can I find further information?
      Participant information is available via the survey link: https://redcap.link/latrobe.HENDS
      For any further questions, contact Lyndel Kennedy at L.Kennedy@latrobe.edu.au

      Closing date: December 31, 2021

      Romantic relationships and Facilitators of and barriers to romantic relationship success in autistic individualsautism
      Researchers at Deakin University are interested in what helps and what damages romantic relationships among autistic individuals. We believe this may help inform a program to support autistic people to develop better romantic relationships.

      Who is conducting this research?
      Researchers at Deakin University

      Who is eligible to participate?
      If you are at least 18 years old and:
      You are autistic (you do not have to have current or previous relationship experience to take part); or
      You are currently in or previously had a relationship with an autistic individual,

      What does participating involve? 
      We ask if you would participate in an online survey about your romantic and possibly sexual relationship experiences, as well as your personality traits. This survey may take up to 45 minutes to complete.
      You may enter a draw to win 1 of 20 Amazon gift cards valued at $20 (AUD) upon completing the survey
      If you completed the survey during our first round of advertising and would like to be retrospectively entered into the prize draw, please email Ying at ryew@deakin.edu.au to let us know.
      To take part in the survey, go to: https://researchsurveys.deakin.edu.au/.../SV_1AoTIZpXUJR40Zv

      Where can I find further information?
      To help you decide whether or not you would like to participate, you may read the Plain Language Statement for this study here: https://deakin365-my.sharepoint.com/:b:/g/personal/ryew_deakin_edu_au/EfLqOVLG_a1FgLt0Ufzo1ksB1csJ_F4gaBmuCftQmSOTkA?e=hKPu6j
      For any further questions, please contact Ying at ryew@deakin.edu.au

      Closing date: December 2022

      The CUB study: communicating and understanding your baby

      A randomised-controlled trial of a behavioural intervention for optimising social and communication development of newborns with a genetic link to ASD, ADHD or Intellectual Disability.
      The study commences in the third antenatal trimester of pregnancy and continues until the child turns 2 years of age.

      Who is conducting this research?
      CAPTeam - Childhood Autism Phenotype Team, at La Trobe  University

      Who is eligible to participate?
      Pregnant women whose baby has a family history of autism, ADHD, or intellectual disability

      What does participating involve? 
      The CUB study participation involves being randomised into one of the two study groups.  50% of participants will be allocated the developmental monitoring group, while the other half will be allocated to the intervention group.  
      This research is investigating a new program that runs from the third antenatal trimester through to when the baby is 8 months of age. Through this randomised control trial, we are exploring whether this program may help parents understand more about their baby’s early social and communication skills, and in the process assist their baby’s development.  All participating babies will receive developmental monitoring as part of the trial.

      Where can I find further information?
      Please contact Alex Aulich, Study Coordinator by email: CUBS@latrobe.edu.au
      More information at CAPTeam, Childhood Autism Phenotype Team current studies: https://www.latrobe.edu.au/psychology/research/research-areas/developmental-psychology/CAPTeam/current-studies

      Closing date: December 30, 2021

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