Self-Advocacy and Post-Secondary Success of Students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

Andrew Nelson, Charles Bethel

Abstract


Administrators in secondary and post-secondary education are supporting increasing numbers of students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) who are interested in attending college or other post-secondary settings. Self-advocacy skills play a critical role in the academic and non-academic success of students with ASD. Few, if any, studies have been conducted to examine tools or procedures to help school systems determine the self-advocacy skills of their students with ASD. This study built on existing research in college supports for individuals with ASD by examining the utility of a specific survey to assess self-advocacy factors that affect student success. Administrators in Bengaluru, India used the survey to sample educators' perceptions of the self-advocacy skills of their transition-age students with ASD. Results from data collected suggest that this survey could be used to determine the overall likelihood of post-secondary success of a student group based on several key self-advocacy indicators. Specific self-advocacy domains needing increased support were also generated by the survey. Implications for secondary and post-secondary leaders interested in developing the self-advocacy skills of their students are discussed.

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