Innovative Technology for Autism Initiative
The Innovative Technology for Autism Initiative (ITA) was created to spur development of new technology to assist those living with autism. Its goal is to lead in the development of products that provide real world solutions to issues faced by those with autism, their families, educators, healthcare specialists, and researchers.
ITA is designed to create a merger of technology with other fields such as design, engineering, social science and neuroscience. CAN’s vision was to facilitate an interdisciplinary and creative approach to the challenge of utilizing technology to improve the daily lives of people with autism.
To enable the efforts of those developing products and technologies related to autism, ITA has established the following programmatic areas: multi-year grants, fast track bridge grants, educational programs, and a workgroup within which investigators can meet, share, and collaborate.
The ITA workgroup and its resources also serve to disseminate research and actively recruit new investigators to the field. In line with its mission to innovate, ITA supports projects employing both traditional and emerging research methodologies. The technology and research supported by ITA is intended to either help manage the everyday challenges faced by those with autism; support development and education; or assist researchers studying the fundamentals of autism biology and treatment.
Examples of existing and possible products are:
- Assistive technologies, such as communication aids that provide a voice for those who cannot speak, activity prompters that provide cues for completing day-to-day tasks, and wearable bio-sensors that provide information necessary for individuals with autism to self-regulate behavior
- Educational products, such as games that teach math, reading, writing and social skills
- Rehabilitation technologies, such as virtual reality environments that could possibly improve body awareness and motor planning
- Data capture and telecommunications technologies that make it easier for assistance networks (parents, specialists, doctors, and teachers) to easily share information and produce consistent interventions for children with autism
- Tools that aid in the search to understand autism better, such as lab equipment, informatics, and assessment tools
To learn more about our available Innovative Technology grants, please visit our Open Grants and How To Apply page.