When a newborn joins a family we become beguiled by the perfection of this wondrous new being. Any hint of difference is easily overlooked during the early years.
CRC for Living with Autism Spectrum Disorders
OTARC is one of 12 core partners in a new ‘Cooperative Research Centres for Living with Autism Spectrum Disorders‘ for which Prime Minister Julia Gillard announced government funding of $31 million in February. Together with contributions from universities, including La Trobe, not-for-profit participants, and industry partners, there will be a total of about $104 million available over 8 years for research on ASDs aimed at improving the lives of people with an ASD and their families.
What is ‘secure emotional attachment’?
I was sitting at the doctor’s office waiting for my appointment when a mother walked in with her three year old girl. She had curly hair, rosy cheeks, and wore a fluffy pink dress with white laces. She caught my eye as she was moving away from her mum towards the toy box.
What do newborn babies, children who have been severely deprived of human contact, people with autism, and blind mothers have in common? On the surface, not much. But they provide a common theme for understanding how social and communication skills develop in early life.
By Dr Kristelle Hudry
During 2012, the ADOS-2 – a much anticipated revision to the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule – was formally published and became available for international use. The earlier version, the ADOS-G (Generic), published in the year 2000, was considered to be the gold-standard observational assessment for the diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorders.
Welcome to our first newsletter for 2013, and, so far, what a year it’s been! Few weeks in the academic year are as exciting as the one I recently had when, on the Tuesday, I found out that I had been promoted to a full Professorship, and on the Friday, that the long awaited Cooperative Research Centre for Living with ASDs had been funded!
Congratulations to Sarah Leung on the successful completion of her PhD. Her thesis entitled “Self-awareness, episodic and autobiographical memories and narrative skills in children with high functioning autistic disorder” was passed by the assessors. Sarah was supervised by Professor Cheryl Dissanayake, with Professor Edith Bavin as co-supervisor.
Congratulations to our very own OTARC Director. As you may have already read elsewhere in this newsletter, Cheryl is now a Professor. This is an achievement worth celebrating as it reflects her past hard work in developing OTARC and will give added status to our Centre in future research.
Dr Giacomo Vivanti has been invited to be on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.
Dr Kristelle Hudry joined the AMAZE (Autism Victoria) Accreditation Board.
Professor Nurit Yirmiya is from the School of Psychology at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Her research includes developmental trajectories of preterm infants, associations between perinatal, postnatal and genetic factors and developmental characteristics of young children, characteristics of the Broad Autism Phenotype in Siblings of Children with Autism, and resolution of the diagnosis among parents of children with autism spectrum disorder.