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Asperger Syndrome/High Functioning Autism in the Classroom
Adults with Asperger Syndrome


What Is Asperger Syndrome?
Social and Communication Skills
Visual Strategies
Behavior Strategies
Adults with Asperger Syndrome
Contact Information

Who are the adults with Asperger Syndrome?

Due to the fact that Asperger Syndrome was not officially recognized until 1994 (see "what is Asperger Syndrome?") there are few adults who have been diagnosed with the syndrome. However, there are many adults who meet the criteria. They are in all walks of life, but are more often than not found in highly specialized fields. They are engineers, scientists,computer programmers, college professors, accountants and more. Their "narrow range of interest" has become a career. They are focused and dedicated to their task, sometimes exclusive of almost all else in life.

The website below has lists of famous personalities with "autism like symptoms". It should be noted that while these people have not been diagnosed with Asperger Syndrome they are among the "unique" of the world and many of their characteristics are very "Asperger like". If a student in your college class has Asperger Syndrome or it's characteristics, be prepared! They could end up on this list someday too!

Famous people with Autistic Traits

The site below is the home page of Lars Perner an adult with Asperger Syndrome. The whole site is helpful in understanding how the person with Asperger Syndrome functions so it is included here. The article "Preparing to be nerdy where nerdy is cool" is found by clicking on the link "preparing for college".

Preparing to be Nerdy where nerdy can be cool

Asperger Syndrome in College

When people with Asperger Syndrome go to college they are finally the ones their peers look up to. They are likely the ones who are focused on their studies and getting good grades. They are there for one reason only, to learn all they can about their field of interest. They want that degree so they can pursue a career in just about the only thing that really matters to them.

Instructors of these "unique" students may feel somewhat intimidated by their vast knowledge of certain subjects and wonder if there is anything they can teach them. While it is true that they are quite proficient in their field of interest, they often need a lot of assistance in other areas. Just as the younger students need help with organizational skills so do many of the college students. Social nuances are often still not within their grasp. They may not comprehend "slang" or "jargon" or "figures of speech". They may need help taking notes during lectures and might benefit from having a classmate take notes for them or make copies of their own notes for this student to use. Creative writing classes may floor them. They may need help in understanding that someone lecturing to an auditorium of people is not talking to "just them" and shouldn't blurt out remarks. When a college professor suspects that they have someone with Asperger Syndrome in their class, there are things they can do to help this student without singling them out publically. Social "cues", clearly written instructions, attempts to keep the environment predictable and most of all an understanding that the student is not "different" by choice and needs, probably even welcomes, your compassion and desire to help make life easier for them. You may have another "Bill Gates" or "Albert Einstein" in your class for all you know!