Are you the parent of a child 12-17 years of age who has autism spectrum disorder (ASD)? If so, you and your child may be able to participate in a research study to help find out if a new program called Emotion Awareness and Skills Enhancement (EASE) can help teens with ASD manage their emotions. Compensation provided.
STUDY PURPOSEMany teens with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) have difficulty controlling their emotions, but there are currently few therapies available to help. The purpose of this study is to find out if a new program called Emotion Awareness and Skills Enhancement (EASE) can help adolescents with ASD better manage their emotions. The EASE program involves counseling and mindfulness training for children with ASD, along with parental support.
COULD THIS STUDY BE RIGHT FOR YOUR CHILD?
- Ages 12-17
- Diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder
- Have an IQ above 80
- Fluent in the English language
- Parent willing to attend sessions and assessments with child
WHAT PARTICIPANTS CAN EXPECTParticipation in this study involves an initial 2-2.5 hour visit to see if your child is eligible to participate in this study. If eligible after screening, your child will be assigned a counselor and randomly assigned (like the flip of a coin) to one of two therapy programs, either the EASE Program using mindfulness to bring awareness to emotions and giving the participants tools to deal with those emotions, or Supportive Therapy using evidence-based treatments to target any problems the child may have with the exception of emotions. Both programs involve 16-20 weekly sessions with a counselor that last 45-60 minutes each. Parent and child will be provided with online resources, and both will be asked to complete questionnaires and assessments at multiple points throughout the study. There is also an optional EEG component to the study where the participant will wear a cap to measure their brain’s electrical activity and play games.
IRB:STUDY20110317A - sIRB-EASE (Emotional Awareness and Skills Enhancement) Program: A Clinical Trial
MEET THE RESEARCHER
Carla A. Mazefsky, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh. Dr. Mazefsky is a graduate of the Virginia Commonwealth University where she received her PhD in Clinical Psychology. She received her postdoctoral training at the Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics. Dr. Mazefsky’s research interests include emotion regulation as a critical mechanism in autism spectrum disorders.