Date of Award
Bachelor of Arts
As young adults with ASD increasingly enter into colleges and universities, many are faced with issues of social impairment and isolation from their peer communities. (Gelbar et al. 2015; Jobe & White, 2006; Shattuck et al. 2012) Understanding ASD awareness and how it translates into genuine acceptance of those with ASD in college communities is a particularly important issue, as is understanding how to foster greater ASD acceptance among college age adults. The present study sought to explore potential predictors of ASD peer acceptance among college students, building off mixed past research and improving past methods. The results demonstrated a significant positive correlation between students’ quality of past experience with ASD and their acceptance of peers with ASD, though no significant relationship emerged between knowledge of ASD and acceptance of ASD peers. There was no direct relationship between students’ quantity of ASD experience and acceptance, however, quantity of ASD experience did positively correlate with the quality of ASD experience. Having a family member with ASD was not found to be a predictor of ASD acceptance, however, the closeness of participants’ relationships with family members with ASD was positively correlated with acceptance. Overall, these findings suggest colleges should focus on fostering more positive social engagement for students with ASD to improve community acceptance and attitudes.
Turecki, Samuel, "Factors Contributing to the Peer Acceptance of Autism Spectrum Disorder Among College Students" (2021). Honors Theses. 263.
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