Navigating University Life
Halls of Residence
Busyness and Noise
Missing Family Support
Empowering University Students with autism
I am passionate about enabling neuro-divergent students shift from negative to positive self-belief that triggers growth and life changes. I have in the past fifteen years worked in primary, secondary, and higher education settings to facilitate their study skills and independent learning in developing new confidence in their identity and fulfilling their potential. Having family members with autism has given me the means to connect and understand the struggles that students with autism face at Higher Education.
Transition to university is especially difficult for students with autism due to the sudden increase in independence, higher social and academic demands, having to manage without family support, challenges with navigating daily university life, emerging adulthood (Thompson et al., 2018), reduced access to personalised support (Scott & Sedgewick, 2021), and autism stigma amongst staff and other students (Vincent & Ralston, 2020). With the increasing number of university students with autism transitioning into first year, it is crucial that adequate access and appropriate interventions are tailored around their needs commencing before Freshers' week and running into the first academic semester.
In collaboration with the Autistic voices, my PhD research investigates the gap in knowledge about the cognitive, emotional, and sensory mechanisms of change that might facilitate the transition to university and reduce the risk posed on their mental health.