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The Pennsylvania State University and Georgetown University’s Medical Center are seeking children between the ages of 11 and 13 and their parent/guardian to take part in a study about adolescent brain development. The goal of this study is to find out what leads some youths to misuse drugs or alcohol and how that affects the brain.


To be eligible, the Youth Must:

  • be between 11-13 years old
  • not have begun to use drugs or alcohol
  • never have suffered a serious head injury
  • not have metal implants inside the body or non removable metal braces


What is involved in participation?

The study involves 2 sessions of data collection performed three times over 3 years.


During each visit, researchers will ask the youth questions about their behavior, personality, cognitive ability, experiences, and any drug or alcohol use. Adult caregivers will be asked similar questions in a separate room.


The youth will be asked to take several thinking tests and play games that assess cognitive, behavioral, and emotional abilities. Non-invasive magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) brain scans will be used to measure brain activity and structure. Each visit will take between 2-3 hours to complete.



Eligible youth participants paid: Up to $195 in gift cards for participation in all 6 visits.

($20 for the first visit alone)

Parent/Guardian paid: Up to $310 in cash for participation in all 6 visits.

($40 for the first visit alone)

Your child will also receive a T-shirt with picture of his/her brain! We will pay for all travel and parking.


Contact Information:

If you are interested, contact us via email at ADS@georgetown.edu or by phone at 202-687-4012.­­­­­­­­­­­­­­ A study coordinator will ask questions that will take about 10 minutes over the phone. You will receive a $20 check just for completing the phone survey even if you are not eligible. If you are eligible you will be scheduled for your first visit to Georgetown University.


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