Autism Spectrum Australia

Apply for research approval

Applications for approval to advertise, recruit for and conduct research at Aspect are now open for 2017.

Aspect is committed to supporting relevant and thoughtful research into autism. We welcome proposals from academics, researchers and university students to conduct research that will benefit people on the autism spectrum, their families and professionals working in the field.

Aspect can support external research projects by:

  • Advertising ‘calls for participants’ on our website and via posts on Aspect's social media
  • Forwarding information about research projects to Aspect schools, service managers and clients
  • Where appropriate, providing advice on methodological and ethical issues.

To comply with professional ethics standards and ensure research integrity, all proposed research projects that wish to advertise their research study through Aspect or conduct research with Aspect staff and/or clients must first be reviewed and approved by the Aspect Research Approvals Committee.

Approval criteria

The Aspect Research Approvals Committee assesses each application against a set of crtieria, including:

  • If the application to Aspect is consistent with the approved HREC application 
  • The benefits of the proposed research for Aspect and to the wider community 
  • The potential impact of the conduct of the proposed study on Aspect’s clients and services
  • If the proposed recruitment methods, recruitment materials, research methods, measures and/or instruments for data collection and the particpant information and consent forms appropriate for people on the autism spectrum.  To address this criteria, please inlcude in your application a description how your recruitment methods, recruitment materials, research methods, measures and/or instruments for data collection and the particpant information and consent forms cater for the sensory, social and communicative needs of people on the autism spectrum, and their families/carers. For useful information and guidelines on inlcusive autism research, please refer to the publication of the Autism CRC: Inclusive Research Practice Guide 1: Engaging Individuals on the Autism Spectrum as Research Participants. Click here to download a copy of this publication. 

Our approval process

We operate a three-tiered research approval system. The level of application you need to submit will depend on the type of support you are seeking from Aspect. 

Tier 1 access 
We will publish a page about your study on Aspect’s website for the duration of your recruitment period of the study; and include your study on our monthly listing of approved research studies on Aspect’s Facebook page. Where applicable, your study can also be included in a post on our LinkedIn and Twitter accounts.

Tier 2 access 
We will provide Tier 1 access PLUS information about your study will be forwarded to relevant clients of Aspect services, where considered appropriate by the Aspect service manager(s).

Tier 2 approval does not enable external researchers to contact any Aspect clients, staff, services or schools directly, and does not guarantee access to Aspect clients, staff, services or schools. Staff, students and families at Aspect schools and clients and staff of other Aspect services are often in high demand as research participants. We therefore have limited capacity for to facilitate participant recruitment within Aspect for external researchers. Each application for access is assessed by the relevant Aspect manager(s) on a case-by-case basis, subject to current demands for the school populations and/or the client base of Aspect services to participate in research.

Tier 3 access: Conducting research with an Aspect school or service, or recruiting exclusively via Aspect

If you wish to conduct research at an Aspect school or service, or recruit exclusively via Aspect for your study, please first contact Dr Trevor Clark, National Director Aspect Research at to discuss conducting a research collaboration with Aspect.


A non-refundable application fee must be paid when you submit your application. Payment of this fee does not guarantee research approval by the Aspect Research Approvals Committee. Autism CRC research applicants are currently exempt from the Aspect Research application fees.

The fee for a Tier 1 application is $100. The fee for a Tier 2 or Tier 3 application is $150.

The details of how to make your payment are provided on the application form.

 How to submit your application

Full details of how to complete and submit your application, and pay your application fee, are provided on the form Application to Advertise and Conduct Research at Aspect: external applicants. 

You will need to complete this Application form, a Participant Recruitment Advertisement form and supply copies of all supporting documentation relating to your project. Your supporting documentation must include your full HREC application, any HREC amendments and all HREC approval letters. For a full list of documentation required, see Section 2 of the Application form. 

To download the application form, please click here.  

To download the Participant Recruitment Advertisement form, please click here.

Aspect staff members who wish to apply to conduct research through Aspect should access the staff application form via the Aspect intranet, in the Research section.

After payment of the application fee, email one (1) copy of your Application form, your Participant Recruitment Advertisement form, one copy of all documentation required for your Aspect application and a copy of your payment receipt to

Response times

We aim to provide a response (Approval, Revisions required, or No approval) within three weeks of receiving all documentation and payment for a Tier 1 application and within four to six weeks for a Tier 2 or Tier 3 application. These times may vary. 


Please direct all enquiries about research applications to     


Apply for research approval