RAYS, a Brown University research study, is aimed at studying the outcomes and development of autistic teens and young adults aged 12-24 as they navigate adolescence to early adulthood.
What are the goals of the study?
The goal of RAYS is to examine the challenges and problems that adolescents and young adults on the autism spectrum experience over the course of adolescence and young adulthood, especially their exposure to alcohol and other drugs.
What will happen during the visit or online?
Participation involves 4 interviews over 3 years, each one year apart after the initial assessment. The study consists mainly of interviews and filling out questionnaires on mood, behavior, alcohol and other drug use, and relationships with family and friends. Teens/young adults can earn up to $395 for participating over the course of the study and parents/guardians can earn up to $225. All visits can be done remotely or in-person. The length of the visits vary by timepoint. Our baseline assessment generally takes 3-4 hours, T2 takes about one hour, T3 takes about 3 hours and T4 takes about one hour. All assessments can be broken up into multiple sessions if needed or completed in one sitting – we leave it up to the participant. If a participant is over 18 years old, their parent/guardian does not need to participate in order for the young adult to participate. If their parent/guardian would like to join the study at a later point, we will try to accommodate enrolling them.
How will this help families?
This study can help researchers better understand the experiences of adolescents and young adults on the autism spectrum.