Knowledge Translation & Exchange

Autism Care

Research
Education
Community
Policy

Research

“Future research needs to focus not only on the biological markers of autism but also include data about functioning, participation, and environmental barriers and facilitators.”

Dr. Olaf Kraus de Camargo  //  Developmental Pediatrician

 

MacART is laying the foundation for creating a systematic way of linking scientific research on autism at McMaster University to clinical practice at McMaster Children’s Hospital.

The physical proximity of McMaster Children’s Hospital, Hamilton Health Sciences, and McMaster University has a number of characteristics that provides the rare opportunity for collaborative research. Taking advantage of existing university and clinical infrastructure and cross-appointments for clinicians at the university, autism experts from these organizations are coming together to integrate autism research into clinical practice.

The focus of MacART members’ research is in the areas of basic science, clinical practice, clinical research, epidemiology and statistical modelling, knowledge translation and exchange, and social science research. By promoting the collaboration of stakeholders across disciplines, MacART is reducing barriers to implementing research in clinical practice, with the goal of advancing autism care through meaningful research.

Learn more about our research HERE.

Education

MacART members are now supervising more than 50 research trainees at the undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate levels, and are engaged in the mentoring of junior and intermediate faculty members.

In the future, we intend to establish research and clinical training programs for students in McMaster’s undergraduate medical, health sciences, and psychology programs, and for residents and fellows in Pediatrics and Psychiatry.

By training and mentoring emerging researchers and practitioners, we will help to solidify their understanding of and commitment to using basic science to inform their clinical practice, and to use their clinical experience to help formulate research questions. It is our belief that involving these learners in MacART educational activities will promote their use of practices that advance autism care through meaningful research.

Community

“Our scientists are working collaboratively with local clinicians to generate the evidence needed to improve autism services. This symposium is a great example of McMaster’s community engagement efforts.”

Dr. Patrick Deane // President & Vice-Chancellor // McMaster University

 

The community engagement component of MacART strives to work with stakeholders and involve them as partners in every step of the research process.  By doing so, the questions that drive research begin to change. They become more meaningful because they address the real day-to-day challenges faced by children and their families, and the clinicians supporting them.

MacART aims to increase participation and involvement of members of the McMaster and Hamilton communities in the research process. With community members driving the research, new and relevant knowledge can be produced to bridge the research-to-practice gap in autism and advance autism care through meaningful research.

Policy

“People whose lives are connected to the challenge of autism can share knowledge – from clinicians to educators to parents – and what an amazing opportunity that is. We have a real opportunity to translate challenges into research, and research into practice that will help families living with autism.”

Rob MacIsaac  //  President & CEO // Hamilton Health Sciences

 

Policies should be created using the best available evidence that make positive impacts on the lives of Autistic individuals, along with their families.

MacART’s founder, Stelios Georgiades, serves on both federal and provincial advisory committees about autism supports/service funding. Along with the wide-ranging expertise of its many autism experts, MacART is set to act as a highly credible source of evidence-based information to influence and inform public policy about the provision and funding of autism diagnosis, services, and family supports.

MacART will continue to find ways to collaborate with policymakers to both learn more about the policymaking process, and to contribute our expertise and knowledge to inform policymaking, in order to advance autism care through meaningful research.

Knowledge translation and exchange (KTE) is a collaborative process. The goal of MacART’s KTE core is to involve all stakeholders in each step of the research cycle. Community members have been asking for research that addresses their real-world problems and MacART is committed to responding to their ask. Findings of research will be shared with parents, Autistic persons, other researchers, clinicians, educators, and policymakers through consultation, conferences, and our website. This KTE process aims to advance autism care through meaningful research by encouraging the use of evidence to inform clinical practice and policy.

Holly Augerman

Holly Augerman is the Director of Child and Youth Mental Health and Autism Services at McMaster Children’s Hospital. She is interested in evidence based supports for Autism and engagement with families and those with lived experience to inform the development of policy and programs. 

Dr. Olivia Ng

Dr. Olivia Ng is the Clinical Director of the Developmental Pediatrics and Rehabilitation Program at McMaster Children's Hospital and serves as Assistant Clinical Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences at McMaster University.  Her clinical and research interests are in children with neurodevelopmental disorders and neurodevelopmental differences (including Autistic children), program evaluation and treatment outcomes, and interdisciplinary collaboration of clinical services. 

Alina Kislenko

Alina Kislenko is an Autistic psychotherapist who runs The ADHD & Spectrum Centres in Guelph and Ottawa (with an all-neurodivergent practitioner team). She is also an Assistant Clinical Adjunct Professor at Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine. Alina's special interests are ADHD, Autism, Giftedness, and Psychopathy. 

Dr. Mackenzie Salt

Dr. Mackenzie Salt recently received his doctorate in Cognitive Science of Language from the Department of Linguistics and Languages at McMaster University. His research has focused on describing the pragmatic languages abilities and social skills of Autistic adults.

Lorraine Hoult

Lorraine Hoult is a Clinical Psychometrist at the Ron Joyce Children’s Health Centre in the Autism Program.  Her clinical and research interests include genetics of autism, predictors of treatment response and outcome, risks of premature birth, provincial and federal policies, Autism program development and evaluation.  

Dr. Linda Nguyen

Dr. Linda Nguyen is a Postdoctoral Fellow in the School of Physical and Occupational Therapy (SPOT) at McGill University. She aims to engage with interested parties (including youth, siblings, families, healthcare professionals, civil societies, and policy makers) in patient-oriented research projects and policy to support children with disabilities, including autism, and their families.

Dr. Stephen Gentles

Dr. Stephen Gentles was a postdoctoral fellow with MacART, under the supervision of Dr. Stelios Georgiades. His research examines the social psychological needs and responses of parents of Autistic children as they navigate intervention. He is now a CIHR Health System Impact Fellow in a project that is a partership between an academic institution and a community organization; he is co-supervised by Dr. Stelios Georgiades (McMaster University) and Margaret Spoelstra (Autism Ontario).

Dr. Vivian Lee

Dr. Vivian Lee just received her doctorate in Developmental Psychology in the Department of Psychology, Neuroscience and Behaviour at McMaster University. She holds the prestigious Lawson Foundation Postdoctoral Fellowship and will be joining the Offord Centre for Child Studies in the Fall of 2016. She is interested in examining the barriers and facilitators to participation in recreational programs for Autistic children and youth and children with neurodevelopmental disorders. Her research also explores the effects of these programs on their physical, emotional, and mental health.

Dr. Olaf Kraus de Camargo

Dr. Olaf Kraus de Camargo has a strong interest in interprofessional education and knowledge transfer and is the co-director of CanChild - Centre for Childhood Disability Research. His research interests focus on the World Health Organization’s International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF) and its application to a variety of developmental disabilities and to those with neurodevelopmental differences such as Autistic individuals.

Dr. Stelios Georgiades

Dr. Stelios Georgiades is the Founder and Co-Director of the McMaster Autism Research Team (MacART), the Director of the Offord Centre for Child Studies, the inaugural holder of the McMaster Children's Hospital Chair in Autism and Neurodevelopment, and the Co-Founder of the Child Health Specialization in the Bachelor of Health Sciences Program at McMaster University. Dr. Georgiades’ research examines issues related to the developmental trajectories as well as the clinical and biological heterogeneity in neurodevelopmental disorders and Autism. Dr.