Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctorate of Education, Ed.D.


College of Education



First Advisor

Rinyka Allison, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Anne Grey, Ed.D.

Third Advisor

Angelo Letizia, Ph.D.


Through the passage of federal disability legislation, the opportunity to attain higher education exists for individuals experiencing Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Researchers have examined the neurodevelopmental impact of ASD on students and the needs of students at colleges and universities. Since ASD affects the social communication of individuals, the researcher conducted a study to gather lived stories of the social experiences of students with ASD. Through a narrative methodology, three students provided lived stories of their social experiences at a higher education institution. Students provided stories through interviews and journal writing of their social interactions with instructors, peers, and staff. The researcher utilized narrative coding and problem-solution narrative in the analyzation of data. Students reported varied experiences with instructors, peers, and staff. Participants reported low interest and interactions at college events. Through the research, students from a traditionally marginalized population had a voice to share their experiences. The study increased awareness within the Autism community, families, and higher education institutions of the social experiences of students with ASD.

Included in

Education Commons