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Rhys Swainston, Research Associate

Rhys is a MSc postgraduate working as a Research Assistant alongside Dr Catherine Grainger. He has run two autism-related project looking at the support systems that were available to autistic adults as children and their employability as adults. He is currently assisting on a project that focuses on autism and prospective memory.

Andrew Currie, PhD Student

Andrew is a PhD student at the University of Strathclyde, where he completed his MRes in English studies in 2021. His research focuses on literary narrative processing in autistic adult readers and explores their engagement with literary fiction. He is particularly interested in whether the cognitive traits associated with autism create a unique reading experience for such readers. Andrew is also passionate autism inclusion, advocacy and community participation. He is currently supervised by Dr. Elspeth Jajdelska (Strathclyde), Prof. Nigel Fabb (Strathclyde) and Dr. Catherine Grainger.  

Sarah Dantes, PhD Student


Sarah completed her masters in Autism Research at the University of Stirling in 2022 and is now a full-time PhD student within STAR. Sarah is also involved in the STARTS network, where she completed a placement as part of her masters and continues to work voluntarily assisting with different aspects of STARTS’ research.

Research Interests: 

Sarah’s PhD focuses on the impact of stigma – especially internalized stigma – on autistic adults’ mental health and identity. Sarah is passionate about community-based participatory research and is being supervised by Dr. Cath Grainger and Dr. Carol Jasper.

New STAR team members

From left to right: Dr Eilidh Cage, Dr Amanda Roestorf and Dr Catherine Grainger

At the start of the new year, we look forward to an exciting 2020!

We welcome two autism researchers as new members of the Stirling Autism Research group.

Dr Eilidh Cage joins as Lecturer in Autism. Eilidh’s research interests include mental health and the experiences of autistic people.

Dr Amanda Roestorf joins as Post-Doctoral Research Assistant. Amanda’s research explores the ways in which remembering to do things in the future (Prospective Memory) affect everyday functioning and well-being across the lifespan.

Find out more about Eilidh and Amanda on our Meet The Team page.