If I were a teacher…: Concepts of People on the Autism Spectrum About the Education System
Assumptions: This article is part of a wider study on adults with autism. The main assumption of the series of studies is concerned with listening to and hearing the voices of those most affected – those with a diagnosis of autism. The material, which is based on the experiences of people with autism, allows us to present views on the role of the teacher – the creator of the educational space. Thus far, we have presented the experiences and comments of teachers and therapists; now we can listen to the voices of not only students and parents, but people with autism. The research problem was to present the educational experiences described by autistic people in a paper on pedeutology. The aim of the study was to investigate the opinions on education held by people with autism.
Method. This study employed the netnographic method and involved a group of people with a diagnosis of autism who met online and agreed to participate.
Results. Reaching out to a large group made it possible to analyze their statements by ranking and creating meaning bundles.
Conclusions. The first conclusion is that there is a difference in the approach to the teaching/learning process. This is due to symptoms that are specific to autism, as well as to the different educational and therapeutic approaches. The second conclusion is related to the use of punishment that, in addition to forbidden forms (such as physical punishment), often evolve into psychological and social punishment, such as isolation, marginalization, or a lack of interest. It seems to be equally important to draw attention to the ineffective attempts to impose recognized normative forms of functioning (often referred to as a violation), as well as treating these people as not fully intellectually capable, which is not a condition (intellectual disability can co-occur in a few cases [see Casanova et al., 2000]).
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