Welcome to the Autism in Education Lab (AEL) at Simon Fraser University!
The overarching goal of our research is to better understand and support autistic children, youth and adults. Our lab leads five main programs of research: creating smart technology using artificial intelligence to support autistic children, youth and adults who experience decreased sound tolerance (sound sensitivity project); incorporating the perspectives of autistic individuals in research and creating awareness about neurodiversity; improving the transition to university for autistic students through the Autism Mentorship Initiative; exploring how autistic individuals visually attend to and interpret information in their environments (eye tracking & social attention research), and examining how facial expression production and interpretation may contribute to difficulties in social interactions between autistic and neurotypical individuals. We are joining many others in the field of autism research that have started making a concerted effort to incorporate the voices of autistic individuals in the research process, as well as using identity-first language and neurodiversity perspectives. We work closely with SFU’s Autism and Developmental Disabilities Lab towards these goals. In addition to autism research, we conduct basic research to understand mechanisms of attention and perception in neurotypical populations.
AEL’s research is funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and Kids Brain Health Network (KBHN).