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Read more about: Transition to adulthood

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.

Helping Students with Autism Navigate Back-to-School Time

Returning to school after summer vacation can be hard for any child. For a student with autism, this time of year can be especially stressful. Students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) often have trouble adjusting to change. In fact, “insistence on sameness” and “difficulties with transition” are symptoms of ASD. A new classroom, schedule, teachers, classmates, or new school can trigger distress far beyond the typical back-to-school blues.

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Teens and Screens: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Cheryl Cohen, M.S., director of online and community programs at the Interactive Autism Network. discusses the latest research, including her own, on how teens with ASD use technology in their day-to-day lives. She also talks about the barriers teens with autism encounter using the Web and parents’ concerns about online safety and screen time. Her discussion also includes an update on various technology careers for individuals with autism.

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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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Meet Darnell Carr Newsum

Darnell Carr Newsum has two children with autism, each with unique strengths and challenges. By participating in SPARK, she hopes researchers can uncover some of the causes and supports for her children and many others.

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