About this Issue: Transition to College for Students with Language Disorders On and Off the Autism Spectrum
In this issue of Topics in Language Disorders, issue editors, Drs. Lynne Hewitt and Amy L. Weiss, and their authors address the topic, “Transition to College for Students with Language Disorders On and Off the Autism Spectrum.” This issue offers concrete and up-to-date information about the challenges faced by students with language and communication disorders, particularly students with autism spectrum disorders (ASD), entering college or university life.
The first article, by Frink, Whitmire, and Bogdan, reviews policy shifts that occur from high school to college and provides an overview of the cognitive and linguistic challenges of the college context that could present barriers to students with language difficulties, as well as principles of universal design that could be adopted by college instructors.
Hewitt (2015) next focuses on comprehensive assessment of speech, language, and communication assessment for college-age students with ASD. Then Richards describes characteristics, assessment, and treatment of writing difficulties in college students with language disorders and/or learning disabilities.
The issue concludes with two articles that describe innovative university based programs to address some of the challenges faced by students with ASD. Weiss and Rohland describe a “Communication Coaching Program” at the University of Rhode Island, which provides services as part of a comprehensive set of services for students who register through their office of disability services for students. Then Retherford and Schreiber describe “Camp Campus,” a program offered at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire for high school students with ASD to introduce them to campus living and to provide explicit instruction in the executive functions and other skills they will need to succeed as college students.
Collectively, the articles in this issue provide insights about the nature of challenges and how to address them in providing access to a college education for students with language difficulties both off and on the autism spectrum. Enjoy.