IBIS – School Age

Did your child participate in our study as an infant?

We are currently extending our previous study of brain and behavior development in infants at risk for developing autism by now examining those same children at school age between 7-14 years of age.

We will be calling or emailing your family to schedule a visit for the school age follow up. The study will take place over five years so if your child is too young now, they will meet the inclusion age over the course of our study. We will do our best to work around your schedule now that your children are older and have more activities.

For your visit, you will travel to your closest IBIS location for a single visit with reimbursement for travel related expenses. Your child will complete behavioral, cognitive, and adaptive functioning assessments at no cost to your family. Your child will have an MRI scan at no cost, following mock scanner training that eliminates the need for sedation.

When your child comes back to visit us at school age, they will complete mock scanner training where they learn how to stay still in the MRI scanner without the need for sedation. This allows us to scan their brain while they are awake. Using the mock scanner has been highly successful in the children that have already returned for their school age visit.

More ways to get involved

MRI Preparation

We have various materials to help your child be successful with their MRI scan. These materials include a video of a child completing mock scanner training and real scan, social stories, and visual schedules. We can also help you create an individualized at home training plan for your child so they can prepare for their MRI scan at home. An outer space theme is available for in-person visits.


IBIS is now collaborating with a national network of universities participating in the NIH-funded Environmental influences on Child Health Outcomes (ECHO) initiative. The goal of the ECHO initiative is to understand the influence of environmental exposures on the health and development of children. Your family will receive $100 in compensation for participating in this study.

iPSC Project

A new project has been added to IBIS that will use induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs) to study early brain development. This project aims to understand how alterations in pre-natal development lead to changes in the brain structure. When your family returns at school age, we will ask your child to have blood drawn by a trained specialist for this project. The compensation for completing a blood draw is $50.

Contact Us

UNC Chapel Hill
Meghan Vanasek
(919) 843-1331

University of Washington
Nicole Simard
(206) 543-2125

Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Raquel Serruya
(267) 425-1727

Washington University
Lisa Flake
(888) 845-6786

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