Looking back on this year, I’m so proud of the many accomplishments of our faculty, staff, and students, despite hard economic times for research funding – it’s quite an impressive group!
Researchers at UNC Chapel Hill have found that preschoolers with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) who receive high-quality early intervention benefit developmentally regardless of the treatment model used – a surprising result that may have important implications for special-education programs and school classrooms across the country.
As I sit down to write this, and look back over 13 years of research in the DAHS, two old advertising tag-lines keep popping into my head: “You’ve come a long way, Baby!” and “You made it the old fashioned way, you earned it!”
Dr. Enikõ Rák, Assistant Professor, has received a $33,324 grant from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Services for the Blind (DSB), to support a “Comprehensive Statewide Needs Assessment,” to identify and describe the rehabilitation needs of individuals with blindness, deaf-blindness, and other visual disabilities.
The Sensory Experiences Project (SEP) team, led by Dr. Grace Baranek, recently hosted a research symposium, titled "Characterizing Sensory Features in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders: Behavior and Physiology," at the Gatlinburg Conference on Research and Theory in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.
Speech and Hearing Sciences Professor Betsy Crais was one of eight scholars recognized at a graduation ceremony for Class III of the Carolina Center for Public Service's Faculty Engaged Scholars program on November 2. Crais and the other scholars, who represented various disciplines from across campus, received cords and certificates during the ceremony at the Carolina Club.
The First Year Inventory, a 10-minute questionnaire filled out by parents after a child’s first birthday, shows promise in identifying children who are later diagnosed with autism or other developmental problems.
Division of Speech and Hearing Sciences Assistant Professor Adam Jacks, PhD, recently received an R03 award from the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders (NIDCD) focusing on an alternative approach to treating speech impairment in stroke survivors.
UNC Physical Therapy Assistant Professor Michael Lewek, PT, PhD, has received a $400,000 NIH R21 grant to continue work studying ways to help stroke survivors’ improve their ability to walk. Lewek initially pursued this line of research with the help of a NC TraCS $10,000 pilot grant.