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Dr. Patrick Jachyra

Assistant Professor


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Assistant Professor in the Department of Sport and Exercise Sciences  



  • Affiliate Scientist: Clinical Research - Adult Neurodevelopment and Geriatric Psychiatry, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, Canada
  • Visiting Fellow: Discipline of Psychiatry and Mental Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of New South Wales, Australia
  • Core Member: The Alliance of Suicide Prevention and Intervention Researchers and Educators (ASPIRE) Working Group, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Canada
  • Affiliate: Centre for Neurodiversity & Development, Durham University
  • Member: Autistica Early Career Researcher Training Programme 
  • Associate Member: Royal Society of Medicine, UK

Google Scholar


Patrick joined Durham University from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, Canada where he completed a post-doctoral fellowship in mental health prevention and intervention. Patrick completed his undergraduate, masters and doctoral studies at the University of Toronto, Canada.

Research Interests:

Patrick’s research examines the psycho-social dimensions of disability, health, and well-being. Patrick's work is driven to support the physical activity and well-being of neurodivergent individuals, with a particular focus on autistic people. The goal of this research is to support the well-being, participation and inclusion of neurodivergent people in society.

To advance this research, Patrick takes a transdisciplinary approach drawing on scholarship from rehabilitation sciences, disability studies, psychology, sociology, and public health. 

Research on Mental Health in Neurodivergent Youth/Adults:

Youth share their stories on accessing/receiving mental health care, with tips for healthcare professionals on how to initiate and foster conversations about mental health: POND Youth Digital Stories | Ontario Brain Institute

Article raising awarness on the mental health challenges experienced by autistic peopleAutistic people are six times more likely to attempt suicide – poor mental health support may be to blame (

Raising Suicide Awareness: “Are you thinking about suicide”? How asking this question could save someone’s life - Staff Blog (

Research Funding:

Patrick's research has been funded by: Canadian Institutes of Health Research; Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council; Child-Bright Network, Knowledge Translation Innovation Incubator Grant; the New Frontiers in Research Fund Government of Canada; the Ontario Autism Scholars Award; Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital. 

Academic Awards:

Patrick's academic training has been supported by the Discovery Fund Talent Development Competition from the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health which supports the next generation of world class mental health researchers. Patrick's doctoral research received a second prize award in the Pursuit Award from Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital for outstanding global contributions and achievements to childhood disability research. 

Knowledge Mobilization:

Patrick has presented his research locally, nationally and internationally across: Iceland, Australia, Japan, Canada, United States, Spain, Denmark, Poland, and the UK.

Community Partnerships:

Beyond research, Patrick has been actively involved in the community as the founder and organizer of the Extraordinary Youth Council in Toronto, Canada which is a community recreation program for neurodivergent young people. Patrick’s contributions to the community have been recognized by the University of Toronto Awards of Excellence which is the University of Toronto's most distinguished awards program. He has also received the Gordon Cressy Student Leadership Award from the University of Toronto.

PhD Supervision:
Patrick welcomes applications from potential PhD students interested in the psycho-social aspects of disability, mental health, and physical activity. If you are interested in potential opportunities to study at Durham, please email Patrick directly.

Research interests

  • Neurodevelopmental disabilities
  • Autism
  • Physical Activity
  • Mental Health
  • Bioethics

Media Contacts

Available for media contact about:

  • Sport: Disability
  • Sport: Neurodevelopmental disabilities
  • Sport: Mental Health
  • Sport: Physical Activity
  • Autism:


Journal Article

Supervision students