Empowering People, Launching lives

Participate in research

Organisations and individuals seeking your help in progressing their research.

We receive regular requests to be a part of research, or to share new research studies with our stakeholders. This includes organisations such as leading universities in the fields of psychology and ABA, as well as individuals seeking to improve the understanding of autism, and the work we can do to support people with autism. We are keen to support any requests that help this, once reviewed by our Ethics Committee to ensure they meet the moral standards and values of our organisation. We will not consider any research proposals without prior ethics approval from the institute of study.

To take a look at some of the projects we have recently shared including results, where available, visit our archive page.

Exploring the experience of BAME* parents who have children with autism and co-morbid disorders: An Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis 

There is little research about how autism is experienced in BAME communities in the UK. Families in BAME communities face additional challenges, compared to their white British counterparts, and your insight into this is extremely valuable. This research could help to develop more culturally sensitive support in the future.

The research will take the form of an interview lasting approximately 45 minutes. For more information on the study, download the information sheet or contact the researcher using their details below.

If you wish to participate, please fill out the consent form and send it to Please also send your contact details (your mobile number so you can be contacted to arrange an interview).

Researcher: Hana Richardson,
Supervisor: Dr Andrew Holliman,

Deadline: 21st May 2021

*The researcher recognises that many people do not identify with the term ‘BAME’ as it groups many diverse ethnicities and cultures together. BAME is used widely in academic research and for administrative purposes so for the purpose of this research it is the term that has been chosen. The researcher will acknowledge specific ethnicities in the dissertation to highlight the diverse range of ethnicities and heritages taking part in the study. A full explanation of terms will be included in the final research piece.  

Recent lockdown restrictions and the social development of children with autism

The purpose of this study is to explore the impacts of not regularly attending school, not seeing friends and the disruption to routine on the social development of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The study is looking for parents of children with a formal diagnosis of autism aged 4 to 16. To participate follow the link to complete a short 10 minute survey.

Researcher: Olivia Keen,
Supervisor: Dr Emma Vardy,

Deadline: 31st May 2021

Sibling relationships and influences on autistic children’s/adolescents’ feelings

Children’s relationships with their siblings play a significant role in their social, emotional and psychological development. Although numerous studies have been conducted on the relationship between siblings, very little is known about the relationship between siblings when a sibling has autism spectrum conditions. This study aims;

  • to investigate how the relationships between siblings differ in a cross-cultural context,
  • to examine how sibling relationships affect children’s feelings,
  • to test the potential factors that play a significant role between sibling relationships and children’s feelings.

To participate in this research, visit the survey page.

Researcher: Emre Deniz,
Supervisor: Dr Umar Toseeb,

Deadline: 31st May 2021

Identity development for autistic people and supporting young people who face identity challenges

The research aims to explore the views of young autistic people on their personal and social identities and how they identify with and align themselves to autistic and non-autistic culture, when they are interacting online and offline. It also aims to explore the extent to which any differences relate to psychological wellbeing/difficulty. The research will take the form of telephone interviews. If you’re interested in taking part or to find out more information, please email Camilla Smith using the details below.

Researcher: Camilla Smith,
Supervisor: Dr Kerry Woolfall,

Deadline: July 2021

Wellbeing in Autistic Young People and their Families

Adolescence and young adulthood are a time of huge physical, social and emotional change for young people. Young people with autism likely have a very different experience of this age compared to their neurotypical peers, however very little is known about their well-being and mental health through these years. Therefore, this study aims to learn more about the wellbeing of young people with autism, in order to develop understanding of autism across this age period.

The study is looking for young people aged 14-25 as well as parent/carers to participate. Follow the links for the young person’s survey or the caregiver’s survey.

Researchers: Elizabeth Hawkins, & Lucy Licence,
Supervisor: Dr Caroline Richards,

Deadline: 31st October 2021

The preschool brain imaging and behaviour project (PIP)

This research, conducted by King’s College London, is the first Europe-wide study on brain development in pre-schoolers. Their goal is to better understand how differences in brain development are related to a child’s social, emotional, behavioural and cognitive development.

They are currently recruiting young children with neurodevelopmental conditions. In particular:

  • Children with autism (between 3-4.5 years), and/or
  • Children with ADHD (between 4-5.5 years), and/or
  • Children with developmental delay (between 3-4.5 years), and/or
  • Children with epilepsy (between 3-4.5 years).

If you have any questions, please email the research team at who will be able to answer and queries you have.

Deadline: summer 2021

The experiences and mental health of students with autism attending UK secondary schools with a specialist provision, and their parents during the time of the COVID-19 pandemic

The purpose of this study is to gain an understand of how children with autism and their parents experienced the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdowns. The research will be conducted via a video interview lasting around 20 minutes.

If you would like to take part, or find out more information, please get in touch with one of the researchers using the information below.

Researchers: Elif Acar, Marjana Aktar and Mohammed Ahmed
Supervisor: Frauke Elichaoff,

The effects of COVID 19 on the cardiovascular health (Heart health) of children with autism

The Institute of Technology Carlow, Ireland is conducting a survey to find out about the cardiovascular health (heart health) of school going children with autism and the effect that COVID-19 related restrictions has had on this aspect of their health.

By taking part you will be helping the research team understand some of the risk factors for cardiovascular health in this community and how COVID-19 related restrictions have impacted them. Take the survey here.

Researcher: Katie White,
Supervisor: Sharon Kinsella,


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