Our mission


To advance scientific understanding of autism to create positive change.

Our objectives

  • To conduct internationally competitive scientific research projects and facilitate collaborative research networks
  • To develop research and training for practice and policy and improve professional and public awareness of research

Wales Autism Research Centre (WARC) was initiated through a unique collaboration between Autism Cymru and Autistica, the School of Psychology, Cardiff University and the Welsh Government. Its establishment was supported by generous donations from the organisations above and from Autism Initiatives, Baily Thomas Charitable Fund, Waterloo Foundation, Jane Hodge Foundation, Research Autism, Freemasons Grand Charity.



The Autism Research Policy Practice Hub is an open access site championing the use of research in policy and practice. Check out the hub for research publications on autism, policy and practice guidelines, news and discussions. The RPP Hub is funded by ESRC and the Welsh Government.



Publications in print

Carrington. S. J.*, Kent, R. G*., Maljaars. J., Le Couteur, A., Gould, J., Wing, L., Noens, I., Berckelaer-Onnes, I., Leekam, S. R. (2014).  DSM-5 Autism Spectrum Disorder: In search of essential behaviours for diagnosis.  Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 8(6), 701-715. (*joint first authors).

Uljarević, M., Prior, M., & Leekam, S.R. (2014). First evidence of sensory atypicality in parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Molecular Autism, 5 (1), 26.

Hollocks, M.J., Jones, C.R.G., Pickles, A., Baird, G., Happé, F., Simonoff, E. (2014). The association between social cognition and executive functioning and symptoms of anxiety and depression in adolescents with autism spectrum disorders. Autism Research, 7 (2), 216-228.

Cooper, M.*, Martin, J.*, Langley, K., Hamshere, M., Thapar, A. (2014). Autistic traits in children with ADHD index clinical and cognitive problems. European Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 23(1): 23-34. (* joint first authors).

Iao, L. & Leekam, S.R. (2014). Non-specificity and theory of mind: New evidence from a non-verbal false-sign task and children with autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Experimental Child Psychology, 122, 1-20.

Lidstone, J., Uljarević, M., Sullivan, J., Rodgers, J., McConachie, H., Freeston, M., Le Couteur, A., Prior, M. & Leekam, S. (2014). Relations among restricted and repetitive behaviors, anxiety and sensory features in children with autism spectrum disorders. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorders, 8(2), 82-92. doi: 10.1016/j.rasd.2013.10.001

Lidstone J, Uljarević M, Kanaris H, Mullis J, Fasoli L, & Leekam, S. (2014) Imitating the Child with Autism: A Strategy for Early Intervention? Autism 4:124. doi: 10.4172/2165-7890.1000124

Publications accepted/in-press

Stirling, L., Douglas, S., Leekam, S., & Carey, L. (2014). The use of narrative in studying communication in autism: A review of findings and methodologies. In J. Arciuli and J. Brock (eds.) Language and Communication Impairment in Childhood Autism, Trends in Language Acquisition Research, Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

School of Psychology Homepage

Social Media

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