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Fellowships to USA, Canada, and International Students for Predoctoral Research Projects Related to Autism

Autistic Scientist Predoctoral Fellowship

GrantWatch ID# 205999
Agency: Foundation

Funding Source
Autism Speaks

Geographic Focus
USA: AlabamaAlaskaArizonaArkansasCaliforniaColoradoConnecticutDelawareFloridaGeorgiaHawaiiIdahoIllinoisIndianaIowaKansasKentuckyLouisianaMaineMarylandMassachusettsMichiganMinnesotaMississippiMissouriMontanaNebraskaNevadaNew HampshireNew JerseyNew MexicoNew York CityNew YorkNorth CarolinaNorth DakotaOhioOklahomaOregonPennsylvaniaRhode IslandSouth CarolinaSouth DakotaTennesseeTexasUtahVermontVirginiaWashington, DCWashingtonWest VirginiaWisconsinWyoming

Important Dates
Conference Date: 10/26/22
LOI Date: 12/06/22
Deadline: 01/31/23 8:00 PM ET

Grant Description
Fellowships to USA, Canada, and International students for predoctoral research projects related to autism. Applicants must submit a letter of intent prior to submitting a full application. Funding may be used for the following expenses: tuition reimbursement, research costs and supplies, fringe benefits, and professional travel.

The primary purpose of the predoctoral fellowship is to provide funding to support exceptional research training opportunities for highly qualified candidates. Fellows will work directly with mentors who are leading autism researchers across a wide variety of fields broadly related to autism research. Autism Speaks encourages applications on all topics, but applications on the following topics are particularly encouraged: 

  • Adult transition and life course outcomes (including aging and older adulthood)
  • Behavior dangerous to self and others, including certain self-injurious behaviors, and innovative, person-centered supports and interventions (e.g., addressing social or environmental triggers of behaviors) to promote physical and emotional well-being 
  • Co-occurring medical and mental health conditions (particularly seizures and GI problems/microbiome), with an emphasis on intervention studies and can also include immunology/inflammation
  • Development and validation of measures:
    • Examining outcomes important to community members (e.g., well-being)
    • Including novel or non-traditional modalities (e.g., machine learning, biological measures)
  • Gender, sexual health and/or reproductive health
  • Innovative implementation of technology to enhance reach and impact of services, with an emphasis on diagnosis and intervention in low resource settings
  • Pre-clinical studies aimed at helping to ameliorate the most disabling challenges associated with autism
  • Research addressing interactions with service systems that can inform systematic policy changes
  • Research that benefits communities who experience compounded marginalization (for research that involves human participants, Autism Speaks will prioritize study designs that include and benefit the diversity of the community that they serve)
  • Studies addressing the mental health and well-being of autistic people (as defined by them)
  • Studies that focus on individuals who experience autism with intellectual disability, who use augmentative and alternative communication (AAC), or those for whom communication solutions are unavailable


  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Criteria for Eligibility
• The candidate must be an enrolled student in a program leading to a research doctorate (such as a Ph.D. or Sc.D.) or a combined degree (such as an M.D./Ph.D.) in an academic department of an accredited university or health/medical institution.
• Eligible applicants and institutions DO NOT need to be located in the United States. International applications are encouraged.
• The candidate must have two or more years remaining before completing their program.
• The selected predoctoral fellow must spend at least 80% of their professional time engaged exclusively in their Autism Speaks autism research-related activities for the duration of the award and cannot simultaneously hold another fellowship award during the support period.
• Prior to application, predoctoral candidates must have an identified mentor for their fellowship.
• Autism Speaks is dedicated to equity, diversity and inclusion and encourages applications from Black, racialized/visible minority, Indigenous/Aboriginal people, women, 2SLGBTQ+ persons and all other qualified applicants.

For information on mentor eligibility, see the following link:

Indirect costs are not allowed.

Pre-Proposal Conference
A webinar explaining the application process and answering questions will be offered October 26, 2022 at 4 PM Eastern time.

Register here:

Pre-Application Information
- Letter of Intent (LOI) due on or before: December 6, 2022 | 8:00 p.m. (U.S. Eastern Time)
- Letter of Intent decisions: Week of December 19, 2022
- Recommendations due on or before: January 24, 2023 | 8:00 pm (ET)
- Application due on or before: January 31, 2023 | 8:00 pm (ET)
- Application Notifications: July 2023

The Predoctoral Fellowship program requires you, the student, to submit two separate applications: the Letter of Intent (LOI) and fellowship application. After an LOI has been approved by the review committee, applicants will be granted access to the full fellowship application.

Students can only submit one application in response to this 2023 RFA. Mentors can be listed on only one student’s application.

Estimated Size of Grant
The Autism Speaks two-year Predoctoral Fellowship awards $37,000 USD per year. This includes a stipend of $26,000 USD plus a $11,000 annual allowance.

Term of Contract
Two-year fellowship

Contact Information
Apply online:

Direct questions to:
Joan New,
Grants Manager

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