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Changing the Public Perception of Autism

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Emily Brown

on 25 May 2015

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Transcript of Changing the Public Perception of Autism

Understanding Autism
Stereotypes and Ignorance
Breaking Down Barriers
Effects of Education
In urban Japan, there are open discussions on autism (Higashijima). The public knows more about autism, so they work better with people with autism. This creates a more productive and beneficial environment.
Thesis
The public view of those with autism will change and become more accepting as awareness increases and education programs are implemented.
Changing the Public Perception of Autism
Because autism affects the brain, you can't tell that someone has autism just by looking at them. They see the world differently, so they act differently, and people who don't understand autism perceive them as as 'weird' or 'different' or someone to take pity on (Majetka-Grossman).
Stereotypes and Ignorance
Stereotypes and Ignorance
Breaking Down Barriers
Education programs can include reading articles on autism, trainings on how to identify those with autism, and integration of those with autism into neurotypical peer groups and classes (Harnum).
Working cohesively enriches everyone's experiences. Workplaces are more productive, the public is more accepting, and diversity increases. Chances are you know someone with autism. Do you treat them like you would anyone else? Will you interact with them differently after understanding the disorder more?
Breaking Down Barriers
Understanding Autism
A majority of people with autism have other disabilities that accompany them, such as executive function delays, ADHD, or Tourette's (Czermainski). Many people with autism often experience sensory overloads, which is why many people with autism stim.
Fun fact:
Here are some people who have autism;
Albert Einstein, Mozart, Tim Burton, Andy Warhol, Susan Boyle, Temple Grandin.
Effects of Education
Understanding each others' limitations helps people work cohesively. In work places this increases product yield, in schools it increases diversity of peer groups and helps kids stay on or above grade level.
Conclusion
Because more and more people are being diagnosed with autism, more teachers will learn to correctly teach them and students will include them in peer groups following the teachers' example. Education programs will be implemented and public perception will become more accepting as an understanding of the disorder is reached.
Understanding Autism
'Autistic' has become a negative label associated with nerdiness, bullying, or even pity (Zablotsky). Many don't realize the stereotype unless they actually know someone with autism (Huhtanen). But I have learned that when we educate people on differences, such as in LGBTQ movements, feminist campaigns, or Autism Speaks, people accept and "respect human diversity" (Matejka-Grossman).
Kids with disabilities such as autism are at a higher risk of being bullied (Zablotsky). Ignorance is NOT bliss, it actually really hurts victims of stereotypical abuse.
Before autism was more widely know, people though people with autism were 'stupid' or even 'schizophrenic' (Kanner). It was believed to be caused by neglectful mothers, which is untrue (Sole-Smith).
by Emily Brown
Sources Cited
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Czermainski, Fernanda Rasch, et al. "Executive functions in children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder/Funcoes Executivas em Criancas e Adolescentes com Transtorno do Espectro do Autismo/Funciones Ejecutivas en Niños y Adolescentes con Trastorno del Espectro Autista." Paideia [Ribeirao Preto] 24.57 (2014): 85-90. Academic OneFile. Web. 26 Apr. 2015.
Dillenburger, K., L. McKerr, and J. A. Jordan. "Creating an inclusive society… How close are we in relation to Autism Spectrum Disorder? A general population survey." International Journal of Disability, Development and Education (2014). n.p. Web. 28 Oct. 2104
Harnum, Marsha, Jim Duffy, and Duncan A. Ferguson. "Adults’ Versus Children’S Perceptions Of A Child With Autism Or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder." Journal Of Autism & Developmental Disorders 37.7 (2007): 1337-1343. Academic Search Complete. Web. 28 Oct. 2014.
Higashijima, Jin, et al. "Public opinions regarding the relationship between autism spectrum disorders and society: social agenda construction via science cafe and public dialogue using questionnaires." JCOM: Journal of Science Communication 11.4 (2012). Gale Power Search. Web. 28 Oct. 2014.
Huhtanen, Shelly. "What's in a word? It is evident that labels are everywhere and one does not understand how debilitating a label can be if there are negative connotations to it, until it happens to them. Frankly, children with autism are children first who happen to have autistic characteristics." The Exceptional Parent Aug. 2013: 63. General OneFile. Web. 4 Apr. 2015.
Kanner, Leo. "Autistic Disturbances of Affective Contact." n.p. Nervous Child 2 (1943): 217-250. n.p. Print. 5 Apr. 2015
Matejka-Grossman, Liz. "Change how you see, see how you change." The Exceptional Parent Oct. 2014: 22-23. General OneFile. Web. 4 Apr. 2015
Mustafa Arif, Muhammad, et al. "Awareness Of Autism In Primary School Teachers." Autism Research & Treatment (2013): 1-5. Academic Search Complete. Web. 28 Oct. 2014.
Sole-Smith, Virginia. "The History of Autism." Parents 1 Jan. 2014. n.p. Web. 28 15 Apr. 2015
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