The Duncan Lab strives to conduct research that will facilitate positive outcomes in work, college and independent living for adolescents with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Our team primarily focuses on designing and evaluating interventions for autistic adolescents and their families that target daily living skills (e.g., getting up on time, personal hygiene routines, doing laundry, cooking meals, using a checking account, budgeting money) and academic executive functioning skills (e.g., organizing school materials, planning and prioritizing homework assignments, using effective study strategies).
In a series of research studies, our team developed and refined the only daily living skills intervention for autistic high school students. Results indicated that teens who participated in the treatment gained over 2-4 years of life skills over the course of 14 weeks. This is clinically meaningful since most autistic teens have life skills that are 6-8 years behind their peers, which suggests our intervention is building critical age-appropriate daily living skills that are needed to increase the likelihood of successfully transitioning to the adult world of work, college and independent living.