In this research, we have investigated how autistic university students responded to the COVID epidemic, and how it impacted their social and academic experiences at university.

We found that several inter-related factors (personal, interactional, and environmental) affected autistic students’ learning experiences, including their preferences for in person versus online learning. Although some commonalities were found among the students in their lived experiences, each student is unique and requires different supports. Further, more education and support for non-autistic instructors and peers is needed to effectively support autistic students’ equitable access to learning at university.

Pandemic Experiences: Presentations and Articles So Far



  • Ballantine, J., Rocheleau, J., Macarios, J., Ross, G., & Artemeva, N. (2023). Change isn’t exactly easy’: The effects of COVID-19 on autistic university students’ experiences. Journal of Autism in Adulthood DOI: 10.1089/aut.2022.0032

Current and future activities include

  • Interviews with autistic and non-autistic professors and instructors about their experiences teaching autistic students (both in person and online)
  • Analysis of quantitative surveys about autistic students’ experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic