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What is this research study about?

We do not have a good understanding of how people on the autism spectrum cope with life events (both good and bad). This means that helpers (e.g., counsellors, psychologists) may not know what strategies are useful or not useful to suggest when young people on the autism spectrum are going through difficult times.

Why should I help?

By participating in this study, we will gain a better understanding of the most common ways of coping that young people on the autism spectrum use. This information can be shared with helpers so that they can provide effective strategies and interventions when young people on the autism spectrum are feeling worried, sad or anxious.

Who can take part?

You are invited to take part in this study if you are the parent of an adolescent (12-18 years) who has a diagnosis of autism. Your child will also be asked to participate but only after you have completed your questionnaires, and only if you give your consent.

Who is conducting this study?

Dr Nerelie Freeman from Monash University is conducting this study.

What will I be asked to do?

If you decide to take part, you will be asked to complete questionnaires about your child’s autism characteristics and their symptoms of depression. These will take about 10 minutes to complete. You will then be emailed a separate survey link for your child to complete questionnaires about recent life events (both good and bad) the coping strategies they use and how helpful they perceive these coping strategies to be, and their anxiety and depression symptoms. These will take about 20 minutes to complete.

When and where?

Please click on this survey link to access the parent questionnaires:

To find out more about the study and register to participate:

Please contact Dr Nerelie Freeman on (03) 9905 4391 or at

Please feel free to forward this information to others who might also be interested in participating.

Phone us to discuss how we can help you.

Call 1800 277 328

Send us a message and we'll get back to you.

Enquire with Autism Spectrum Australia