Lab Members

Pricipal investigator

Vanessa H. Bal, PhD

Karmazin and Lillard Chair in Adult Autism, Associate Professor

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Dr. Vanessa Bal earned her M.Sc. in neuroscience from the University of Oxford and her Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Michigan. She also completed her clinical psychology internship at the University of Michigan and a postdoc in human genetics at the University of California, San Francisco. Dr. Bal's research program emphasizes a lifespan perspective to furthering understanding of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in adulthood. She employs a variety of approaches to measure and track outcomes and predictors of outcome at different stages of development. In addition to expanding knowledge in these areas, Dr. Bal is leading several projects to develop and refine methods to assess and quantify clinical phenotypes. This includes studies evaluating both biological and behavioral approaches that may be useful in screening and diagnosis, tracking of symptoms across development, and evaluating response to treatment. By emphasizing a multidimensional, lifespan perspective, her research aims to delineate relationships between dimensions of social-communication, language, cognition and emotion in the context of neurodevelopmental disorders in order to inform the development of targeted interventions that capitalize on individual strengths in order to promote well-being for individuals with ASD across the lifespan.

RESEARCH STAFF

Megan Fok

Research Coordinator

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Megan is a research coordinator for the LifeSPAN ASD Lab. She is a graduate of Virginia Tech and has several years of clinical research experience with people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and similar profiles. She looks forward to completing her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and becoming a clinician and researcher in this field. While not in the lab, she enjoys doing yoga, traveling to new places, and binge watching Netflix!

Macy Turley

Research Coordinator

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Macy is a research coordinator for the LifeSPAN Lab. She graduated from The University of Texas at Austin in 2018 and has experience in clinical and developmental research studying individual differences within diverse populations. She is excited to strengthen her research skills with clinical populations and prepare to start her Ph.D. In her free time, Macy loves to read, go on hikes with friends, and bake bread.