STUDY GOAL

To investigate how the brain processes speech in both typically developing children and children with autism.

PARTICIPANTS SHOULD BE:

  • Right-handed
  • Between the ages of 9-11
  • Without braces
  • Native English speakers

PARTICIPANTS RECEIVE:

  • Up to $175 for completing the study
  • Pictures of their brain
  • A Stanford Brain Development t-shirt

STUDY STAGES:

The study consists of two groups of participants: speaker participants and listener participants. Speaker participants will learn how to tell stories about themselves, and listeners will listen to and answer questions about these stories. Appointments are dependent on the participant's group assignment:

FOR SPEAKERS:

Appointments 1-3: Narrative training sessions

Participants will undergo 1-3 training sessions where they will be instructed on how to tell personal narratives. These trainings will be held by Dr. Meghan Sumner and will last 30-60 minutes each.

Participants are compensated $25 per training session, for a total of $25-75. 

Appointment 4: Recording session

Participants may record several rehearsed narrative stories developed during training in Dr. Meghan Sumner's recording studio. This appointment lasts approximately 30-60 minutes.

Participants are compensated $25 for completion of the recording session.

Appointment 5: MRI Scan

During this appointment, participants will undergo a brain scan (MRI). During the scan, participants will tell their rehearsed narrative stories developed during training. An MRI scan is a safe, non-invasive procedure that does not use x-rays or radiation. This appointment lasts 2.5 hours to 3 hours and participants are compensated $50. 

FOR LISTENERS:

Appointments 1-2: Neuropsychological testing

During the first two appointments, your child will undergo a series of neuropsychological assessments performed by Stanford assessors. The assessments include measures of IQ, reading, social communication, and language skills. These appointments will last 1.5 to 2 hours each.

Participants are compensated $25 for completing each of these 2 neuropsychological appointments, for a total of $50.

Appointment 3: Autism Assessments (for participants with autism only)

The sixth appointment consists of the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (ADOS-2) and the Autism Diagnostic Interview (ADI) . The ADOS-2 is a play-based assessment in which the trained clinician observes the child’s behavior during a series of structured and semi-structured tasks targeted at assessing social interaction skills. This assessment takes approximately 1 hour. The ADI is a structured interview between the clinician/assessor and the parents aimed at assessing autistic traits in the areas of social interaction, communication and language. The child does not participate in this interview. This interview lasts approximately 2-3 hours and can be completed either in person or over password-protected Zoom video conference. 

Participants are compensated $50 for the completion of this appointment.

Appointment 4: MRI Scan

During this appointment, participants will undergo a brain scan (MRI). During the scan, participants will listen to stories told by speaker participants. An MRI scan is a safe, non-invasive procedure that does not use x-rays or radiation. This appointment lasts 2.5 hours to 3 hours and participants are compensated $50. 

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