We have a new study investigating how the brain processes and understands speech in children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) as well as typically developing children.

We are interested in understanding speech comprehension in children through anticipating incoming speech and accumulating speech information over a period of time. For all eligible participants, this study involves 2 neuropsychological assessment visits and a MRI brain scan (if the scan session is not completed in one session, participants may be asked to come back for an additional session). For eligible participants with ASD, there will be three additional appointments: a play-based observation, a clinical interview conducted with a parent, and a separate mock MRI brain scan*.

*Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a safe and non-invasive procedure that does not involve x-ray or radiation. To learn more about MRI, please visit our website: https://med.stanford.edu/scsnl.html

Targeted Population:

  • Diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder or Typically Developing
  • Right Handed
  • Ages 9-11 years old
  • No metal in bodies/mouth
  • Native English Speakers


  • Up to $225 upon study completion (ASD Participants); Up to $150 upon study completion (TD Participants)
  • A picture of your child’s brain
  • Stanford Brain Development T-Shirt

Study Stages:

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 2.5 hours

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)

These two separate appointments consist 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. If needed, participants may be asked to come back for a second MRI brain scan, in which case they will be compensated an extra $50. If needed, we also provide a separate mock scanning session, in which we will compensate $25. 

Questions? See our FAQs or get in touch