ASCEND Program

The Advanced Support and Cognitive Enhancement for Neurodevelopmental Disorders (ASCEND) Program, founded and directed by Assistant Professor Dr. Shaun Eack, is dedicated to advancing science on the treatment of neurodevelopmental conditions.

A neurodevelopmental condition is a disorder that begins in childhood or adolescence and affects how the brain grows and responds to the world. Common examples include autism spectrum disorders, which begin in early childhood, and schizophrenia, which begins in adolescence.

They are currently enrolling participants for several studies that provide research-based psychosocial treatments for individuals with different neurodevelopmental conditions.  These studies include:

  • ESSENCE Program – This study aims to develop new psychosocial treatments for young adults in the early course of schizophrenia and examine their impact on the brain
  • Perspectives Program – This study aims to develop the first evidence-based psychosocial treatments for verbal adults with autism spectrum disorder

The ASCEND Program is supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, Department of Defense, Autism Speaks, and the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

Please visit the ASCEND Program website for more information about the program: www.ascend.pitt.edu.