COVID-19: Click here for an updated message from our principal investigator, Dr. Wendy Chung.
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Discover SPARK

Get the latest autism updates from SPARK, including information about genes and ASD research, webinars, and personal stories from our community.

Our ‘genes’ page provides short, easy-to-understand descriptions of genes linked to autism. Under ‘research’, you’ll find the latest updates from SPARK and other autism studies. In our ‘stories’ section, families, scientists and others share their journeys. In our monthly webinars, speakers from the autism community provide useful information for families and people with autism. All are welcome–invitation links are issued in our monthly newsletter. If you have suggestions for webinar topics, please email us at webinars@sparkforautism.org.

SCN2A

Mutations in SCN2A have been linked to autism, intellectual disability, severe childhood epilepsy and schizophrenia.

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Girls and Women on the Spectrum: Challenges with Diagnosis and Intervention

The speaker for our eighth webinar is Kathy Koenig, MSN, director of the Initiative for Girls and Women with Autism Spectrum Disorder and associate research scientist at the Yale Child Study Center. In this webinar, Koenig discusses the complexities of diagnosing girls and women with autism and describes the different challenges for intervention that families face. She also offers some thoughts about how parents can create learning and social opportunities for their daughters. This webinar is 60 minutes long.

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Cover slide for Is Autism Genetic

Is Autism Genetic?

The speaker for our seventh webinar is Wendy Chung, M.D., Ph.D., principal investigator of SPARK. In this webinar, Dr. Chung discusses basic genetic concepts and shares recent scientific progress in autism genetic research. She also talks about the genetic aspect of SPARK. This webinar is 60 minutes long.

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“Adulting”: Effectively Preparing Individuals with ASD

The speaker for our sixth webinar is Mary E. McDonald, Ph.D., BCBA-D, LBA associate professor in the Department of Specialized Education at Hofstra University and interim associate executive director of Long Island Programs for Eden II/Genesis. In this webinar, McDonald discusses how to prepare children and teens with ASD for adulthood. This webinar is 60 minutes long.

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Partnering for Autism

Our fifth webinar, moderated by Alison Singer, MBA, features Ann Palmer of the Carolina Institute for Developmental Disabilities and Patricia Manning, M.D. of the Kelly O’Leary Center. In this webinar, our speakers discuss different approaches to partnering in the autism community. Each speaker brings a different perspective about how developing relationships from within the community enhance program outcomes. This webinar is 45 minutes long.

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Managing Frustration and Anxiety and Teaching Social Skills

The speaker for our fourth webinar is Jed Baker, Ph.D., director of the Social Skills Training Project, a private organization serving individuals with autism and social communication problems. In this webinar, Baker discusses how to manage tantrums and frustration in children and teens with autism. He also offer practical tips for dealing with anxiety and teaching social skills. This webinar is 60 minutes long.

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Advocating For Your Loved One with Autism

The speaker for our third webinar is Gary Mayerson, JD, founder of Mayerson and Associates, the nation’s first civil rights law firm dedicated to representing individuals with autism. In this webinar, Mayerson discusses how families can have an effective IEP meeting and make the case for services and assessments. This webinar is 60 minutes long.

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ASD Consultation and Treatment Across the Lifespan

The speaker for our second webinar is renowned autism expert Catherine Lord, Ph.D. Her talk will feature a discussion on interventions and what types of questions parents or independent adults with ASD should ask doctors and specialists. This webinar is 60 minutes long.

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Practical Strategies to Address Challenging Behavior

Children with autism can present with challenging behavior. Problem behavior can significantly interfere with and limit educational and social opportunities, negatively impact family functioning, and if not addressed can limit overall community integration experiences. This talk will provide an overview of the potential reasons why problem behavior exists and practical strategies that parents and teachers can implement to prevent the development of problem behavior. This webinar is 90 minutes long.

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Meet Amy Gravino

Amy Gravino was recently asked to take part in the┬áSPARK online research partnership, and was both excited and apprehensive to hear about the study’s purpose and intended goals.

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