Discover SPARK

Webinar: A Community Voice-Exploring Genetics and Language Together

In this recorded webinar, Jake Michaelson, Ph.D., discusses findings from a recent SPARK Research Match study. He partnered with 1,500 autistic adults to explore the extensive variation in key aspects of language, including verbal working memory, narrative ability, vocabulary, and reading.

Language is the foundation of community. Part of developing a more inclusive community involves seeking a better understanding of the factors that shape individual differences in language ability. Some of these factors are innate and biological, others are influenced by the environment.


Who is Jake Michaelson?

Jake Michaelson, Ph.D., is the Roy J. Carver Professor of Psychiatry and Neuroscience at the University of Iowa. He directs the Iowa SPARK site and has partnered with the SPARK community in research covering diverse aspects of the autistic experience, including eating, sleep, seizures, language, gender diversity, twice-exceptionality, and others. He currently leads the SPARK “Strengths” working group, which is devoted to balancing today’s mostly deficit-focused research with research that aims to help autistic people discover, develop, and harness their strengths.