WHAT it was about
Cognitive developmentalists have increasingly been attempting to make their research relevant to the diagnosis, understanding, and/or treatment of autism. This preconference workshop took place October 17, 2013, the day before the CDS2013 Meeting in Memphis began. It involved a series of talks and discussions, aimed at identifying what important questions about autism cognitive developmentalists can address, how researchers who do not have training in autism can get involved (and why they might want to), and the responsibilities and tensions inherent in studying and talking about developmental differences.
The MORNING program
featured three discussions, each led by a senior scientist whose research and writing about autism have been highly influential (click on a picture to learn more). The topic of each discussion was decided, in part, by suggestions participants made during the online registration process (e.g., What important questions in autism can be addressed by research with non-autistic participants? What ethical responsibilities do scientists have when studying and talking about autistic individuals?). A reading relevant to each topic was made available prior to the meeting and is linked from the schedule/notes page.
In the AFTERNOON,
three junior scientists who are doing innovative work at the intersection of autism and cognitive development (click on a picture to learn more) each gave a research talk. A reading relevant to each speaker's presentation was made available prior to the meeting, and is linked from the schedule/notes page. The preconference concluded with a panel discussion focusing on issues that arose during the earlier sessions.
Powerpoint slides and notes from the day's events are available on the schedule/notes page.
Participants in this pre-conference came away with a renewed appreciation for the ethical responsibilities that come with studying any minority group, excitement about new research directions, and new collaborative possibilities.
Thanks to generous support from the Jacobs Foundation, the preconference was free and open to anyone; 57 people attended. A number of small grants were available to junior scholars (graduate students, post-docs, and assistant professors) to help offset the cost of an additional night’s lodging at the CDS meeting. In exchange, these individuals took notes on the presentations and panel discussion--these can be found on the schedule/notes page. Many thanks to: Liz Simpson, Ruth Lee, Carley Piatt, Shala Blue, Katherine Rice, Nevena Dimitrova, Ashley Morris, Alia Martin, Kristen Gillespie-Lynch, Steven Kapp, Lauren Libero, Tashana S. Samuel, Zi L. Sim, Laura Hennefield, Sarah Loher, Adena Schachner, Umay Suanda, Maura Sabatos-DeVito, Louise Bunce, Giovanna Morini, Alena G. Esposito.
Rethinking Cognitive Development & Autism:
A CDS Preconference Workshop
October 17, 2013 in Memphis, TN