Background & Purpose
These case studies can serve as tools to support the professional development of individuals who may encounter college students with autism, or those displaying autism-related characteristics. They are derived from formal research projects, email correspondence, questions presented during campus-based trainings and consultations, and informal conversations with a wide range of stakeholders. To protect the anonymity of those involved, the cases are fictionalized versions of real life scenarios described by autistic students, student affairs staff, college administrators, and faculty/instructors.
These case studies will be of most value when they are included as one part of a comprehensive workshop in which participants will be introduced to autism in higher education, use the case studies as a springboard to in-depth exploration of key topics, and have the opportunity to discuss specific experiences encountered by participants.
Although each of the cases can be used in a variety of settings by a wide range of stakeholders, some of the details in each case may be most applicable to specific college offices / units/ personnel. Below, we highlight a few stakeholders/offices for whom each case may be most relevant.
- Ellen & David: Faulty/Instructors, Title IX Coordinators, Greek Life, Campus Police
Leo & Evan: Residence Life, Dean of Students Office, Facilities
Marshall: Faulty/Instructors, Academic Advisors
Nikki & Professor Andrews: Faculty/Instructors, Academic Deans, Conduct Officers
Bryan: Conduct Officers, Faulty/Instructors, Title IX Coordinators
Darius: Academic Advisors, Disability Service Office, Residence Life
Samir: Orientation, Residence Life, Parent and Family Services
We present a series of guiding questions for the cases on the next page.
For More Information
The College Autism Network (CAN) is a national nonprofit organization linking varied stakeholders engaged in evidence-based efforts to improve access, experiences, and outcomes for college students with autism. CAN fulfills that mission through advocacy, research, and training. We have given presentations at dozens of professional conferences, consulted with a variety of individual campuses, and developed wide-ranging resources to support college success for students with autism.