Supporting Students with ASC in Higher Education

It’s World Autism Awareness Week! Pioneered by the National Autism Society, this is a week for raising awareness, breaking stereotypes, and participating in fundraisers, challenges and competitions.

In the UK, about 1 in every 100 people are on the autistic spectrum, that’s 700,000 individuals! Unfortunately, many people with autism face barriers in their every-day life, whether in education, at work or within the wider community. Although the number of students with autism that progress to higher education is increasing, Autistic students are still less likely to complete their course than their classmates, with over 25% of Autistic graduates facing unemployment in the future.

So what’s going wrong?

Only 39% of students on the Autistic spectrum receive support during their studies at UK Universities. Without this support, students may struggle with things like routine, social interactions, completing deadlines and participating in lectures. This could be a result of students with Autism feeling uncomfortable and unsupported in disclosing their disability, unable to receive the support they deserve. Unfortunately, a lack of awareness and understanding of autism can also leave students being excluded from university activities and discriminated against, resulting in isolation and loneliness. Without recognition of the challenges people with ASC face, students are not offered reasonable adjustments that can support them in completing their studies.

Let’s change this!

By raising awareness, improving educational settings and changing attitudes towards Autism, all students on the Autistic spectrum can have the chance to succeed in higher education! To get involved in World Autism Awareness Week, visit

I’m so thankful that I’ve been able to receive specialist mentoring because of the wonderful personalised support that has helped me get through university
Some days I’ve been feeling down, but after my session I leave feeling infinitely better because it’s an outlet for whatever’s on my mind and my mentor’s warmth and enthusiasm is really uplifting.
Cansu T, Zoology Student
I have massively benefitted from the help that my mentor has offered
and she has really helped me be the best I can be during a crazy four years of uni!
Laura D - BA French & Spanish
Laura D
With the help of my mentor I have done things I didn't think I'd be able to
like present a poster at a conference, and now, I am a PhD student and the happiest I've ever been.
Oliver B - Phd Student
I can’t stress enough how much Specialist Mentoring had a positive impact on my university experience
Mentoring taught me so much: how to manage my time better, how to revise efficiently, and most importantly, how to cope with my anxiety on a day-to-day basis. Specialist Mentoring made my university experience a positive one, and I don’t think I would be the person I am today without it.
Sara G - MA Sports Journalism
Sarah G
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