Anderson, A. H., Carter, M., & Stephenson, J. (2018). Perspectives of university students with autism spectrum disorder . Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders , 48 (3), 651–665. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-017-3257-3
Anderson, A. H., Carter, M., & Stephenson, J. (2018). Perspectives of university students with autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 48(3), 651–665. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10803-017-3257-3
The experiences of postsecondary students with autism were investigated, including perceptions and use of academic and other supports. Accommodations during course exams are emphasized in this summary, and included extended time, separate course exam rooms, oral delivery by examiner (live and in-person), and limiting to one exam per day.
Postsecondary students (n=48) with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) from among eight universities in New South Wales, Australia responded fully to a survey. Demographic characteristics, such as sex and age, and other information including academic program, postsecondary years completed, and enrollment status (full- or part-time) were reported.
An online student survey consisted of 32 questions, including multiple-choice and Likert-style items, and addressed the experiences of postsecondary students with ASD. In addition to several details about students' disabilities, survey items asked about academic supports including exam accommodations usage, as well as other supportive programming. Respondents' perceptions and preferences for various services were described through satisfaction scales and ratings of relative helpfulness.
A wide range of exam and assignment accommodations were available; however, only separate rooms for academic exams (n=31), and extended times for exams (n=27) and assignments (n=23) were used by a majority of respondents. Only two students were provided with oral delivery of exams, apparently in-person by a test proctor. Of those who used exam accommodations, nearly all (96%) indicated general positive perceptions of extended time, and 94% did so for separate/alternate room for exams. When asked which supports or services were the most and least helpful of all, 25% of respondents endorsed exam accommodations as the most helpful, and only 3% of respondents indicated that the modification of exams or assignments was the least helpful. Other types of supportive services were also identified and discussed.