The F.U.N. Lab at the University of Notre Dame


Welcome to the F.U.N. Lab

Welcome to the homepage of the Laboratory For Understanding Neurodevelopment.  We are a group of researchers, clinicians, and students who share a common interest in understanding neurodevelopmental disorders, including Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Dyslexia.

Currently, we are working to understand Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). We are interested in how individuals with ASD (including Autism, Asperger Syndrome, and PDD) understand language in order to improve treatment of the disorder.

Communication and Family Relations Project

*Opportunity in South Bend and Goshen, Indiana*

Communication and Family Relations Project. The Communication and Family Relations Project is currently recruiting participants for a new program that focuses on the unique strengths and challenges faced by families that include a child with an intellectual or developmental disability.  We are looking for couples who are married or cohabitating, with a typically developing adolescent between the ages of 11 – 17 and a child  with any type of intellectual or developmental disability (including ASD) who resides in the home.  Families will be asked to visit the Shaw Center for Children and Families or Brenneman Memorial Missionary Church between 5 and 7 times over the course of a year to complete questionnaires, have discussions as a family, and receive research-based information about family communication and relationships. Visits will last between 1 and 2.5 hours each, and families can receive as much as $295 for their participation in the project. For more information, please call us at (574) 631-5729 or email us at funlab@nd.edu.

After School Camp

*New After School Club Available*

The F.U.N. Lab is currently recruiting Middle School and High School students (with ASD and typically developing adolescents) interested in technology and a F.U.N. experience.  Participants in this club will learn a variety of skills including computer game design and robotics programming.  This club is  a research project used to evaluate the effectiveness of an after school program that is intended to improve social and vocational skills in adolescents.  Participants may receive up to $30 for their time.  If you are interested and would like to find out if you meet our recruitment criteria, please contact the F.U.N. Lab at (574) 631-5729 or email funlab@nd.edu.  The club meetings will be held at the William J. Shaw Center for Children and Families (1602 N. Ironwood Dr., South Bend, IN 46635)

Student Spotlight

A F.U.N. Lab senior research assistant, Andrew Flatley, was featured in the College of Science News for his work at Johns Hopkins during the summer of 2015. We are proud of Andrew for representing the F.U.N. Lab and for all of his hard work and commitment. Click here to view the article.

Congratulations to Jamon Pulliam who was recently honored at the Annual Biomedical Research Conference for Minority Students in San Antonio Texas.  Jamon was given an award for his outstanding presentation of his research based on the F.U.N. Lab's Summer Science Camp.  Jamon worked at the Notre Dame F.U.N. Lab this summer before retuning to Tuskegee Univerisity. 

Congratulations to Michelle Won for  receiving a grant from the Autism Science Foundation.  The Autism Science Foundation grant, which is an extremely competitive grant, is aimed at  highly qualified undergraduates interested in pursuing basic and clinical research relevant to autism spectrum disorders during the summer. Michelle will be working with us this summer on the Family Relations and Communication Project.

Congratulations to Whitney McWherter for receiving a Senior Recognition Award.  This award was designed to recognize a select few graduating majors who have distinguished themselves through consistently high levels of achievement in their course work, their research activities, and in their service to the department, university and community.  Whitney received this award for all her hard work in the Psychology Department.

Congratulations to Catherine “Grace” Connolly for receiving the  Ancora Imparo Award.  This award is given to a communicative sciences and disorders major who is outstanding in scholarship, leadership, character, and service. It is the highest honor within the department. Grace’s name will be engraved on a plaque in the new Judd Leighton Speech and Language Clinic.

Congratulations to the F.U.N. Lab's senior research assistant, Elizabeth Klinepeter on earning a 2013 Student Leadership Award. The Student Leadership award is given to 10 Notre Dame undergraduates "who best exemplify the spirit of Notre Dame in social, recreational, residental, service and religious activities that promote the welfare of the University and extended communities. "She was nominated in part for her leadership in the Best Buddies program. Elizabeth has accepted a full scholarship to attend the University of Florida for graduate work in School Psychology.

The F.U.N. Lab's senior research assistant, Stephanie Mazur, was featured in the Science Pre-Professional Department's Student Spotlight. We are very proud of Stephanie and of all our wonderful students that work so hard to make the F.U.N. Lab possible. Click here to view the article.

Keywords: Autism, Autism in Indiana, Autism Research at Notre Dame