Autism Science Foundation Seeks Applicants for 2021 Undergraduate Summer Research Grants

Priority will be given to diverse applicants and studies that focus on understanding and narrowing service gaps among underrepresented populations

NEW YORK — January 13, 2021 — The Autism Science Foundation (ASF), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to supporting and funding innovative autism research, is inviting grant applications from highly qualified undergraduates interested in pursuing basic and clinical research relevant to autism spectrum disorders during the summer. With the RFA (request for applications), ASF noted it will give priority to students from racially and ethnically diverse backgrounds and/or studies that focus on understanding and narrowing the diagnosis and service gaps across race, ethnicity and/or socioeconomic status.

“All of us at ASF were moved by the racial justice movement that rightfully gained momentum in 2020,” said Alison Singer, President of the Autism Science Foundation. “It reinforced the importance of supporting diverse researchers and ensuring there are no barriers to any autism families receiving the high quality and efficient diagnoses and treatment options they all deserve.”

Applications are due by February 22 and any proposed research must be scientifically linked to autism or a closely related field. ASF will consider all areas of related basic and clinical research including but not limited to: human behavior across the lifespan (language, learning, communication, social function, epilepsy, sleep, self-injurious behavior, catatonia), neurobiology (anatomy, development, neuro-imaging), pharmacology, neuropathology, human genetics, genomics, epigenetics, epigenomics, immunology, molecular and cellular mechanisms, studies employing model organisms and systems, and studies of treatment, service delivery, policy and employment.

This is the eighth year ASF has offered grants to promising young researchers. In 2018, Inside Philanthropy praised ASF’s focus on young scientists, writing that funding undergraduates “is not something we see very often. In fact, we almost never see it. A key to achieving (medical) breakthroughs is first to win the battle to engage and retain young investigators. That means getting to promising researchers early. ASF says it’s alone among funders in its view that support for undergrads is a worthwhile use of research dollars. As far as we know, that’s true.”

“Supporting promising young scientists who have an interest in autism research is central to ASF’s mission,” said ASF Chief Science Officer Dr. Alycia Halladay. “We have always believed that encouraging qualified students at the very start of their careers is an important way to attract budding researchers who could eventually make a real difference in the lives of people with autism.”

For more information, or to apply for ASF’s 2021 Undergraduate Summer Research grant, please visit HERE.

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About the Autism Science Foundation
The Autism Science Foundation (ASF) is a 501(c) (3) public charity. Its mission is to support autism research by providing funding to scientists and organizations conducting autism research. ASF also provides information about autism to the general public and serves to increase awareness of autism spectrum disorders and the needs of individuals and families affected by autism. To learn more about the Autism Science Foundation or to make a donation, visit   

Media Contact
Kathy Ehrich Dowd
Forefront Communications for Autism Science Foundation