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Dr Darren Hedley Research Fellow, Autism Research Centre

Dr Hedley is currently a Suicide Prevention Australia (SPA) Research Fellow and is based at the Olga Tennison Autism Research Centre (OTARC), School of Psychology and Public Health, La Trobe University. He is supported by SPA to investigate suicide prevention in autism. This research is also supported by Untapped, OTARC, and La Trobe University School of Psychology and Public Health.

Dr. Hedley completed his undergraduate (B. Psych, Hons) and postgraduate (PhD) degrees at Flinders University, South Australia and an M.A. in Counselling Psychology in Mexico City through the California School of Professional Psychology (CSPP).

Dr. Hedley's research interests also include employment in individuals with an ASD face recognition and emotion processing early assessment and diagnosis and confidence-accuracy calibration in diagnostic decision making. At OTARC he is researching the transition to employment in adults on the autism spectrum, focusing on social impact factors and also the barriers and enablers to workplace success.This research was supported by funding from DXC Technology and the Australian Government Department of Human Services and Department of Defence, and the ANZ Bank. Prior to joining OTARC, Dr. Hedley completed a clinical fellowship in neurodevelopmental paediatric psychology at The Ohio State University in the Child Development Center of Nationwide Children's Hospital. There he specialized in assessment and diagnosis of children with intellectual and developmental disability, including autism spectrum disorder, under the mentorship of Professor James A. Mulick. He then relocated to Boston where he worked in the Facial Affective and Communicative Expressions (F.A.C.E.) lab at Emerson College in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. This research used motion capture, eye-tracking and bio-physiological measures to investigate how children with ASD integrate and produce verbal and nonverbal information, such as facial expressions and language.

Dr. Hedley has published work in referred journals including Autism, Autism Research, Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Mental Health, the American Journal of Family Therapy, and the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disabilities and is an ad hoc reviewer for the Journal of Autism and Development Disorders; Neuropsychologia; Child Psychiatry and Human Development; Autism: International Journal of Research and Practice; Research and Practice in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities; Journal of Experimental Child Psychology; IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics; Australian Psychologist; New Media & Society.

Dr Hedley’s 2019 paper in Autism Research was in the top 10% of that journal’s downloaded papers.


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