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Georgia SEED - What to Expect

Photo: Father and childFamilies who take part in the Study to Explore Early Development (SEED) will be asked to complete several study steps:

  • Each mother will complete telephone interviews and paper and pencil questionnaires.
  • Each child will have a developmental assessment and brief physical examination.
  • Each mother, child, and father (the latter, if available) will give small samples of saliva and blood.
  • Each mother will give permission for study staff to review her and her child’s medical records.

Each step gives us at SEED important information on child development and on the possible causes of autism spectrum disorders and other developmental disabilities.

We provide gift cards after each step is completed for the family’s time and effort.

What to Expect if Your Family Enrolls in SEED

Telephone Calls

We will call you to:

  • Answer any questions you have about the study or about the materials sent to you at different times during the study.
  • Schedule telephone interviews and visits with you and your child to complete the study steps. We will set up these interviews and visits for a time that fits your schedule.
Brief Telephone Interview About Your Child’s Development

During our first call with you, we will ask you a brief series of questions about your child’s current development. This information will help us more carefully plan for the visit we will have with you and your child later in the study.

Telephone Interview About Your Pregnancy With Child

We will set up a time to call to ask questions about your health history and your pregnancy with your child. This interview lasts about an hour.

Other Questionnaires

You will be asked to complete a few paper and pencil questionnaires about your child’s development and your family’s medical history. The questions asked will help us to learn more about autism spectrum disorders and developmental disabilities. You can complete some of these on your own at home, or we can fill these out for you by asking you the questions over the telephone or during the study clinic visit.

We have found that most study participants find it helpful for us to call and review or complete these forms with them over the telephone.

Clinical Visit (in your home or at a clinic)

Clinic Locations:

Marcus Autism Center
1920 Briarcliff Road, NE, Atlanta, Georgia 30329

DeKalb Atlanta Human Services Center
30 Warren Street, SE, Atlanta, Georgia 30317

The final step is an in-person visit with us. During this visit, we will review the study consent form, discuss any other study documents that might still need to be completed, evaluate your child’s development, and briefly examine your child. We will provide a feedback letter with some results and recommendations within 4 weeks of our visit.

We will need you to be present during the visit.

We also would like your child’s father to participate in this visit, if he is available and willing to participate. (However, we can move forward with you and your child only, if that is preferred.)

We conduct these visits at either the Marcus Autism Center or the DeKalb Atlanta Human Services Center. Some children work better in a clinic because often there are fewer distractions than in the home. However, if your family is not able to make it to a clinic, we will conduct the visit at your home.

Here’s what to expect during the visit:

Photo: Boy cutting paperDevelopmental Evaluation of Your Child

We will play games with your child and ask you questions about your child’s development.

Brief Physical Examination

We also will measure your and your child‘s height and head size using a tape measure, and we will weigh your child. If your child’s father is able and willing to attend the visit, we also will measure his height and head size.

We will collect a saliva sample from you and your child and from your child’s father if he is available.

Finally, if you are willing, we will take a blood sample from you, your child’s father, and your child.

Neither you nor your child has to provide a blood sample to be in the study. The decision is up to you.
If you have questions, please contact Georgia SEED via email at or by telephone at 404-498-0058.


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