Understanding Autism

Join a growing community of families, autistic adults, and researchers working to understand autism and improve lives.

WHY JOIN SPARK

  • You’ll be part of the largest autism research community
  • It’s simple and free
  • We are committed to autism research for decades to come
  • Together we can advance the understanding of autism

Who Can Join

  • SPARK is for all individuals living in the U.S. with a professional diagnosis of autism and their family members
  • All ages are welcome

How to Join

  • Create an account online
  • Agree to share data and genetic information
  • Registration takes about 20 minutes

What Participation Means

  • Participation is online and free
  • Your information will be kept private and secure
  • Answer questions about your autism experience
  • Return your saliva kit if you agree to genetic research
  • Learn about additional research opportunities
New to SPARK? Learn more.
Already a participant? Visit your personal SPARK Dashboard.

MEET OUR PARTICIPANTS

Finding Answers for a Daughter’s Autism through Research
Finding Answers for a Daughter’s Autism through Research

Heather Bensch knew her daughter was different since infancy. Twenty years later, SPARK told her it had discovered why.

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“Half My Childhood is Gone”: Growing up with Autism and Epilepsy
“Half My Childhood is Gone”: Growing up with Autism and Epilepsy

Seizures took away some of Abigail's childhood memories. As a young adult, she discovered the reason for both her epilepsy and autism. Her journey to help others with similar conditions led her to two research studies.

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The Long, Long Road to Autism Diagnoses
The Long, Long Road to Autism Diagnoses

A SPARK family had early suspicions that their children might have autism, but that did not lead to early diagnoses. Why was their journey so long?

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WEBINARS

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Katherine Gotham, Ph.D.

Katherine Gotham, Ph.D.

Webinar: Emotional Health in Autistic Adults and Building Better Supports

November 15, 2022

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Matthew Lerner, Ph.D.

Matthew Lerner, Ph.D.

Webinar: Surveying the Landscape of Autism Intervention Practices Across the U.S.

October 18, 2022

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CONTACT US