Welcome to the LifeSPAN Lab!

LifeSPAN Lab Members


Vanessa Bal, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Clinical Psychologist (PSY 28526)

Biography: Dr. Bal is an assistant professor specializing in the clinical assessment and diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders (ASD). The overarching theme in her research has been to identify biologically and clinically relevant behavioral profiles and dimensions of behavior in ASD. Dr. Bal has a particular interest in working with adults and individuals with intellectual disability and employs a variety of approaches to measure and track outcomes and predictors of outcome at different stages of development. Through her research, Dr. Bal aims to identify biological markers and behavioral predictors of both proximal and distal outcomes that can inform diagnosis and the development of novel treatments.

For a list of Dr. Bal's publications, visit: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Vanessa_Hus_Bal

Research Assistants

Alexis Sullivan, M.A.
Staff Research Associate

Biography: Alexis is a research assistant in LifeSPAN Lab. She is a Bay Area native and received her BA in psychology at Pepperdine University and her MA in Counseling at Santa Clara University. Her research and clinical interests include assessment of autism spectrum disorders, cognitive profiles in ASDs and NDDs, as well as psychiatric comorbidity in children and adolescents. Outside the lab, she enjoys hiking, swimming, painting, and eating out with friends. She plans to pursue a PhD in Clinical Psychology.


Megan Fok, B.S.
Staff Research Associate

Biography: Megan is a research assistant for the LifeSPAN Lab. She is a graduate of Virginia Tech and has several years of clinical research experience in Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and similar profiles. Megan is particularly interested in understanding social and emotional behaviors in individuals with ASD and the role of ASD in familial and parental relationships. She looks forward to completing her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology and becoming a clinician and researcher in this field. As a bay area native, Megan is delighted to train at UCSF and work with Dr. Bal at the LifeSPAN Lab investigating profiles of ASD across the lifespan.

Alumni Lab Members

Erin Rosenberg, B.A.
Erin Royal, B.A.