Sara S. Sparrow Fellowship in Clinical Neuroscience

Award Description

The Sara S. Sparrow Fellowship in Clinical Neuroscience seeks highly qualified college graduates to participate in cutting-edge clinical research on autism spectrum disorders in the McPartland Lab and the Yale Developmental Disabilities Clinic at the Yale Child Study Center. The Child Study Center is a leading institution for clinical research on autism and related disabilities, with a multidisciplinary approach spanning behavioral neuroscience, neuroimaging, genetics, and treatment. Successful applicants will be involved in a two-year program of training incorporating both clinical and research experiences, commencing on or before July 1, 2015.

The fellowship’s curriculum includes participation in an intensive summer training course covering the current state of the science in autism research and treatment (1 week), a weekly seminar on autism taught by Drs. James McPartland and Fred Volkmar (1 semester), weekly rounds in the Yale Developmental Disabilities Clinic (year-long), biweekly autism lectures (year-long), weekly lab meetings (year-long), and other didactic experiences at the Yale Child Study Center. The primary training experience will be in daily activities related to clinical neuroscience research. Ongoing studies involve typically-developing children and children with autism, as well as infants at-risk for autism. Fellows will gain experience working with infants, children, and adults with autism and their families. Training and research opportunities include electrophysiological brain recording using electroencephalography (EEG) and event related potentials (ERP), eye tracking, administration of behavioral treatment for ASD, and clinical and diagnostic assessment, including participation on multidisciplinary clinical teams in the Developmental Disabilities Clinic. Through involvement with other laboratories, fellows will also gain exposure to studies utilizing complementary methods, such as functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and functional near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS). Fellows will gain experience and exposure to all aspects of clinical research, from recruiting participants to analyzing data and authoring manuscripts. Fellows will also be expected to submit their research for conference presentation and eventual publication. Successful applicants will be directly mentored by Dr. McPartland and be involved in a highly active and productive community of clinical research scientists at Yale and at collaborating groups in the United States and abroad.

Sponsor Institution: Yale Child Study Center, Yale University (

Lab Director: James McPartland (

Collaborating Faculty:  Fred Volkmar, Kevin Pelphrey, Kasia Chawarska, George Anderson, Denis Sukhodolsky, Fred Shic, Linda Mayes, Flora Vaccarino, Paul Lombroso, Michael Crowley, Pamela Ventola, Brent Vander Wyk, Jean Adnopoz and Wendy Silverman.

Award Amount: $30,000 in Year 1; $32,000 in Year 2 (plus full healthcare coverage)

Term of Award: 2 years

Submission Deadline: February 21, 2015

Eligibility Requirements

College graduates who will have received a bachelor's degree by June of 2015 are eligible. Candidates with previous experience with autism, infants and toddlers, experimental psychology, or neuroscience research will be favorably reviewed. 

Please note that this fellowship is not offered concurrently with graduate studies. However, we do hope that the fellowship will serve as an important stepping-stone towards future graduate studies upon completion of the program.

Application Information

Please review our FAQ section, and for more specific questions, interested applicants should contact or call 203-737-4586.

A complete application includes 1 copy of each of the following items (Please do include your full name on every page of your application):

  1. A completed application form
  2. A resume
  3. Undergraduate and graduate (if applicable) transcripts
  4. A two page personal statement containing biographical material, relevant experience, and career goals. This can be single or double-spaced.
  5. Two sealed and signed letters of recommendation which specifically speak directly to the candidate's potential. 
  6. SAT or ACT scores (official score reports not needed; see application form).
  7. A sample of the applicant's scientific writing (at least five pages).

Submitting Your Application

Electronic Applications (with scanned documents and separate letters of recommendation emailed directly from referees) are preferred and can be sent directly to

Paper applications may be submitted to:

McPartland Lab
Yale Child Study Center
230 South Frontage Rd.
New Haven, CT 06520