Participate in Research

BRAVE: Young Families Study 

In the BRAVE Young Families study, we would like to know more about the stressful events mothers sometimes face, including experiences of violence. Our goals are: (1) to learn how stressful life events affect women’s experience of pregnancy, (2) to learn from women how services might be improved to better address their needs, and (3) to consider how children may be affected by adverse experiences

In order to be eligible, participants must meet the following criteria:
• Currently pregnant 
• Must plan to be the primary caregiver of their child after birth

There are several study components. Participants receive $20 for an interview at the BRAVE Lab on Notre Dame’s campus. If women have other children, they are also complete surveys about their children and a video-recorded play session. Participants will receive $10 for each participating child and children will receive a toy.  Those who participate in the interview may also be eligible to participate in other parts of the study to take place at home, for which they will also be compensated. Free childcare is provided and we will help coordinate your transportation. For additional information, please contact Katie at Phone: (574) 631-3159 or

Memory, Aging & Cognition Lab

The Memory, Aging & Cognition Lab at the University of Notre Dame is recruiting adults between the ages of 18 and 80 to take part in research on memory and the brain. These studies involve computer tasks that consist of rating and making judgments about words, images, or sounds. While completing some or all the computer tasks, your brain activity may be recorded using electroencephalography (EEG). EEG can identify the neural correlates of different aspects of our cognition and involves preparation of electrodes on your scalp to record electrical brain activity. Preparing the EEG sensors can take upwards of one hour, which is included in the experiment duration. Some studies also involve an “eye tracking” procedure while completing these tasks. Eye-tracking involves a camera that tracks your eye movements and pupil dilation. Your participation will help scientists understand the basic processes involved in healthy memory as well as the causes of memory impairments associated with age, injury, and disease.

Dates and times for participating are flexible, and participants will be compensated at the rate of $15/hour for their time. To participate, you must have acquired English before the age of 5 and must be right-handed. If you are interested or have any questions, please give us a call at 574-634-0264 or email at

Shared Book Reading Study

This spring and summer, we are inviting preschool children (ages 2.5-4) along with a parent/guardian to participate in a study of children's book reading. If you live in the South Bend area, then you are invited to participate! Participating children will first complete a few activities with one of our team members; then, they will read two children's books with their parent/guardian. The session will take less than an hour.  At the end of the session, participants will choose a children’s book to take home with them, and they will receive a small payment to cover the costs associated with participation in the study (i.e., time and travel to the lab). We provide free on-campus parking and babysitting for siblings while you participate. If you and your child would like to participate, please email us at to schedule a time.

The Notre Dame Cancer Transitions Project

The Notre Dame Cancer Transitions Project is looking for 30 people (18 or older) with a diagnosis of cancer, who are close to completing medical treatments or who have recently completed medical treatments. The project focuses on the transition off of active treatment for cancer. Being on maintenance medications or medications for other medical conditions would not disqualify you from participating. We are interested in your experience of transitioning from being on active treatment to being a cancer survivor. You will be asked to complete a survey and participate in an interview. If you are interested in participating, please email Tom Merluzzi at  or call 574-631-5623 and leave a message.Thomas Merluzzi is the primary investigator of the Notre Dame Cancer Transitions Project and the Director of the Laboratory for Psychooncology Research

The Notre Dame Families and Babies Study

The Notre Dame Families and Babies Study (ND-FABS) is a longitudinal preventive-intervention study funded by the National Institute of Health.  It provides brief educational programs for families that have recently welcomed a new baby.  Families who participate will have opportunities to learn about communication between parents and sensitivity toward infants, and how those things can impact the relationships between fathers and mothers and their infant child. The primary goal of this study is to determine how best to support infants’ socioemotional development by promoting constructive and sensitive interactions in families.

The Notre Dame Family and Babies Study is actively recruiting participants in South Bend and Fort Wayne, IN and the surrounding areas.  Eligible participants are married or cohabiting parents of a child who is younger than 7 months old.  Participating families will be asked to visit one of our centers (in South Bend or Fort Wayne) four times over the course of the year, and would receive program information, including weekly phone calls and/or home visits, over the course of eight weeks. Families could earn up to $230 for their participation over the course of one year and free childcare is provided during each visit.

To participate in South Bend, please call 574-631-0950 or email us at for more information.

To participate in Fort Wayne, please call 574-631-0956 or email us at for more information.

The Notre Dame SPARC Project: Supporting Parent-Adolescent Relationships and Communication

The Notre Dame SPARC Project is a program designed to support effective communication and strengthen relationships in families that include a child with an intellectual or developmental disability (IDD).  In particular, the SPARC project is geared toward supporting parents and typically developing adolescent siblings of individuals with IDD by promoting effective communication and conflict resolution between couples and also between parents and their typically developing children.  The goal of the study is to evaluate how best to support parents and typically developing siblings of individuals with IDD by improving communication and strengthening family relationships.

The Notre Dame SPARC Project is actively recruiting participants in South Bend and Fort Wayne, IN and the surrounding areas.  Eligible participants are families that include fathers and mothers who are married or living together in the same home with a typically developing child between the ages of 10 and 18 years old, and a child of any age who has been diagnosed with any type of intellectual or developmental disability.  Participating families will be invited to visit one of our centers (in South Bend or Fort Wayne) several times over the course of one year.  Families could earn up to $310 for their participation over the course of one year, and free childcare is provided at all visits by team members who are trained to work with individuals with IDD.

Interested families can call Jessica at 574-631-6009 or email us at (for South Bend) and (for Fort Wayne) for more information.