Applied Research Competition Open for Applications | Organization for Autism Research

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OAR is currently accepting applications for the 2021 Applied Research Competition. Since 2002, OAR has funded over 285 research studies, bringing its funding total to more than $4.2 million. OAR expects to build on this success in 2021, continuing its support of research studies that offer meaningful outcomes to autistic individuals and their families.

OAR invites researchers to submit research pre-proposals for the annual Applied Research Competition. The maximum award is $40,000 for pilot studies beginning in 2022 with a duration of one to two years. International researchers are eligible to apply. Pre-proposals will be accepted through Monday, March 22, 2021, at 11:59 PM ET.

Interested researchers may apply online. All applicants should first review the 2021 request for proposals. OAR funds studies that will likely produce practical and clearly objective results that can help parents, families, professionals, and autistic people make more fully informed choices, leading to healthier and happier lives.

OAR will promote evidence-based practices delivered in the following areas:

  • The analysis, evaluation, or comparison of current models of assessment, intervention, or systems of service delivery, including policy analysis
  • Applied aspects of educational, behavioral, or social/communicative intervention
  • Effective intervention across the lifespan for individuals considered to be severely impacted by autism
  • Adult issues such as continuing education, employment, residential supports, sexuality instruction, quality-of-life determinants, and “later intervention”
  • Issues related to family support, social and community integration, assessment and intervention with challenging behavior, and the use of technology in support of autistic learners

While applicants are always free to submit proposals on any relevant area of research or intervention described above, this year OAR is placing an emphasis on research that addresses the following targeted areas:

  • Community-based assessment and intervention for challenging behavior
  • Community-engaged research
  • Effectiveness of augmentative communication systems
  • Healthcare transition/across the lifespan
  • Improving access to and effectiveness of existing systems and services
  • Integrated employment
  • Intersectionality, equity, and diversity
  • Mental health assessment and intervention
  • Mid-life and older adults
  • Residential/community services and supports

OAR will invite a select number of applicants to submit full proposals in June. Grant recipients will be announced in early December 2021, and studies will begin as early as January 1, 2022.

For more information about the Applied Research Competition, please contact OAR at  or call 703-243-9762.


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