Speakers

 

Dr. Jonathan Weiss

Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, York University (Toronto, Canada)

Dr. Jonathan Weiss

Addressing mental health in people on the autism spectrum: A balanced approach

Dr. Damian Milton

National Autistic Society as Head of Autism Knowledge and Expertise (Adults and Community)

Dr. Damian Milton

Damian works for the National Autistic Society as Head of Autism Knowledge and Expertise (Adults and Community) and sits on the scientific and advisory committee for Research Autism. Damian also teaches on the MA Education (Autism) programme at London South Bank University and is a consultant for the Transform Autism Education (TAE) project. Damian’s interest in autism began when his son was diagnosed in 2005 as autistic at the age of two. Damian was also diagnosed with Asperger’s in 2009 at the age of thirty-six. AUTISM AND IDENTITY FORMATION: A PERSONAL REFLECTION. This presentation gives a personal perspective on the formation of autistic identity and also reflects on methods used in projects exploring autistic self-identity and some of the issues/politics involved more broadly when discussing identity in relation to autistic people. PARTICIPATORY AUTISM RESEARCH. This presentation reflects upon the involvement of autistic people in research and what autistic people have to say when able to raise their voices in regard to autism research, theory and practice. I will also reflect upon the various barriers and difficulties involved in participatory research. In the field of autism studies, a mass of competing and contradictory accounts can be found. By reflecting on a number of studies, this presentation will seek to address the ideological tensions that have formed within and between various ‘stakeholder’ groups and delve into some of the deeper reasons as to why such tensions exist. In conclusion, I suggest that the exclusion of autistic people from meaningful involvement in research is both ethically and epistemologically problematic and constitutes a significant barrier to research impact, yet also review some contemporary projects which serve as exemplars of increasing participation and the potential opportunities for building a more inclusive future.

Dr. Geoffrey Bird

Dept of Experimental Psychology, University of Oxford

Dr. Geoffrey Bird

Geoffrey Bird's talk will be: "Autism, alexithymia and interoception".

Dr. Paul T. Shattuck

Director of the Life Course Outcomes Program, Drexel University

Dr. Paul T. Shattuck

Studies experiences and services that promote positive outcomes for people on the autism spectrum, their families and communities. A LIFE COURSE PERSPECTIVE ON AUTISM AND THE TRANSITION TO ADULTHOOD: IMPLICATIONS FOR RESEARCH AND INTERVENTIONS. This talk will describe Dr. Shattuck’s evolving conceptual framework for research and interventions targeting transition-age youth on the autism spectrum. He will share examples of population-based indicators research that raises awareness about the unmet service needs of this population, informs public policy and identifies subgroups with higher risk for poor outcomes. He will describe his Transition Pathways initiative that is developing innovative programs to help transition-age youth achieve positive postsecondary outcomes. He will discuss a research agenda setting process he co-directed in the U.S. that culminated in an official statement of emerging research priorities. Shattuck will conclude with suggestions for future directions on how to advance research and interventions that result in improved postsecondary outcomes.

Dr. Laura Crane

Centre for Research in Autism and Education (CRAE), UCL Institute of Education.

Dr. Laura Crane

"SOMETHING'S GOT TO CHANGE": Mental health in young autistic adults. A brief description: There is a high incidence and prevalence of mental health problems amongst young people, with several barriers to help-seeking noted in this group. High rates of mental health problems have also been reported in children and adults on the autism spectrum. Taken together, young autistic people may be a particularly vulnerable group when it comes to mental health. Yet there has been remarkably little work on the mental health needs and experiences of young autistic adults (16-25 years). This talk will present the results of a community-based participatory research project – in which a team of academic researchers and young autistic adults collaborated in an equitable research partnership – designed to explore young autistic people’s experiences of mental health problems and their perspectives on the support they sought (if any) for these problems. The results highlight how young autistic people find it difficult to evaluate their mental health, experience high levels of stigma, and often face severe obstacles when trying to access mental health support. The findings also demonstrate how listening to – and learning from – young autistic people is crucial in ensuring that their mental health needs are met. Presentation at the Symposium “Metacognition and self-awareness”, final title to be announced

Professor Mark Brosnan

Ph.D., CPsychol. Director, Centre for Applied Autism Research (CAAR)

Professor Mark Brosnan

Presentation on participation in research and development of technology Presentation on a project involving autistic children and families in the design of iPad technology to support the development and delivery of Social Stories. Presentation at the Symposium “Metacognition and self-awareness”, final title to be announced

David Williams

Reader in Developmental Psychology School of Psychology University of Kent

David Williams

Chair on the symposium on Metacognition and self-awareness