Autism Support Overview
We can support autistic students, or students who think they might be on the autistic spectrum but have never received a formal diagnosis, in various ways:
- Support for transition into University
- One to one support with an Adviser who can help discuss issues surrounding classwork and assignments, and managing accommodation, socialising and other aspects of university life;
- Liaison with staff in your academic school about issues such as exam arrangements;
- Weekly mentoring meetings
- Regular peer support groups
- Facilitate and part fund autism diagnosis in some cases
Please read below for further information and if you would like to send us a message using this form we will respond by email as soon as we can.
Autism Orientation Programme
As we are unable to provide face to face orientation this year, if you are starting in September and would like advice about what we can provide remotely before the start of term please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Support for Autistic Students
- Please register with Student Support and Wellbeing
- Provide written evidence to confirm your diagnosis (a clinical report or doctor’s letter) if you have it.
- Make an appointment to meet your Disability Adviser (these are allocated according to what subject you are studying) – either by emailing email@example.com, calling 01227 823158 or coming into the Student Support reception in Keynes college H block.
- Your Disability Adviser can
- create an Inclusive Learning Plan (ILP) to inform and advise your academic school of your support requirements.
- help you apply for Disabled Student’s Allowance (DSA).
- Help with accommodation requests - students with autistic spectrum conditions have the opportunity to remain in campus accommodation for the duration of their course
- Assess your support needs and possibly refer you for other services such as Mentoring, Study Skills, Educational Support Assistance, or to colleagues in the Wellbeing Team for mental health support, the Careers Service, various tailored peer support groups.
- Specialist Autism Mentors: A weekly opportunity to discuss any academic or social issues with a trained mentor who is experienced in supporting higher education students with autism. Concerns such as anxiety about relationships, independent living, social interaction when living on campus, or prioritising study and coursework can be talked over in confidence.
- Educational Support Assistance (ESA): ESAs can provide note taking in lectures and seminars, and one to one Library Support / Study support, including help with planning and prioritisation, timetabling and structuring their work
Social Support Groups for students on the autistic spectrum
The neuro-diverse community in the University of Kent is pro-active and we welcome new ideas and activities. Below are the usual term-time groups and how to join or find more information. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to check the latest information with us:
- Weekly term-time social group at K-Bar on Wednesdays 4-6pm: open to all and focussed around lively supportive conversation, discussion and making friends, facilitated by Student Support & Wellbeing. If you would like to join the group email Tom Sharp on email@example.com or refer to ‘KASCAfb’ (a closed Facebook group for Kent students and alumni).
- Weekly term-time board games group in KS6 Wednesdays 4-6pm: if you would like to lead a game email firstname.lastname@example.org. (We currently have Carcassonne; Ticket to Ride Europe; Pandemic; Port Royal; Catan; Cluedo; Azul; Chess – we are open to suggestions for purchasing others you’d like to play).
- Kent Autistics group (UoKA) is a student-led group who meet on Wednesdays 3-5pm: please find UoKA on Facebook for more details. To meet with Annette or Chloe (who run the group) before coming along, please private message via Facebook or email: email@example.com.
- SYA? (So You’re Autistic?) is a six week support programme teaching those with a diagnosis, awaiting a diagnosis, or think they might be autistic – more information can be found on the SYA website. We will invite applications each term, to put yourself forward for the next cycle, please email Tom Sharp on firstname.lastname@example.org.
- So, You’re Autistic (SYA) is a support programme teaching those with a diagnosis, awaiting a diagnosis, or self-diagnosed HOW to be autistic – to understand what being autistic means for YOU.
- Autism&Uni is a European-funded research project that works with young people on the autism spectrum to help them navigate the transition from school into Higher Education (HE). They have published a set of Best Practice Guides on supporting students on the autism spectrum in Higher Education.
- The National Autistic Society web pages contain lots of useful further information.
- Watch George Watts's (a University of Kent Postgraduate student) 'Talking in Pictures' film challenging stereotypes of autism.
- SEE Autistic Women We are a group for self diagnosed and diagnosed autistic women. We hold informal meet ups in the South East, ranging from cafes, creative meet ups like pottery cafes, soap making workshops, forest walks, picnics, panic/escape rooms, dinners out.