College Students’ Evaluations and Reasoning About Exclusion of Students with Autism and Learning Disability: Context and Goals may Matter More than Contact
This study used mixed-effects logistic regression to examine undergraduates’ (N = 142) evaluations and reasoning about scenarios involving disability-based exclusion. Scenarios varied by disability [autism spectrum disorder (ASD) versus learning disability (LD)], the context of exclusion (classroom versus social), and whether or not a grade was at stake. Participants were more likely to determine exclusion was acceptable if the excluded student had an ASD diagnosis, there was a grade at stake, and it occurred in a classroom. Exclusion was less likely to be considered acceptable in the “no grade” compared to the “grade” conditions for LD students, but remained high in both conditions for autistic students. This study also describes contextual variations in participants’ justifications for their evaluations.
KeywordsMoral reasoning Disability Exclusion Autism spectrum disorder Learning disability Social domain theory
We would like to thank Shannon Crowley, Josephine Cuda, Declan Foley, Jessica Barnes, Ashley Antwi, and Alexandra Sullivan for their assistance in conducting this research. We would also like to thank the many participants who agreed to be interviewed.
KBB participated in the study design, supervised data collection and statistical analysis and drafted the manuscript. SYK coordinated recruitment and data collection, conducted participant interviews, and participated in drafting and editing the manuscript. DM participated in the study design and statistical analysis, and edited the manuscript.
This study was funded by the Argyelan Family Foundation Fund administered by the Lynch School of Education, Boston College, and the Buehler Sesquicentennial Fund of Boston College. We would like to thank Shannon Crowley, Josephine Cuda, Declan Foley, Jessica Barnes, Ashley Antwi, and Alexandra Sullivan for their assistance in conducting this research. We would also like to thank the many participants who agreed to be interviewed.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki Declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
- Allport, G. W. (1954). The nature of prejudice. New York: Addison-Wesley.Google Scholar
- Bryman, A. (2015). Social research methods (5th edition.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Dijkstra, J. K., Lindenberg, S., & Veenstra, R. (2007). Same-gender and cross-gender peer acceptance and peer rejection and their relation to bullying and helping among preadolescents: Comparing predictions from gender-homophily and goal-framing approaches. Developmental Psychology, 43(6), 1377–1389.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Gillespie-Lynch, K., Brooks, P. J., Someki, F., Obeid, R., Shane-Simpson, C., Kapp, S. K., & Smith, D. S. (2015). Changing college students’ conceptions of autism: An online training to increase knowledge and decrease stigma. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 45(8), 2553–2566.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- Hayes, A. F. (2005). Statistical methods for communication science. Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
- Holm, S. (1979). A simple sequential rejective multiple test procedure. Scandinavian Journal of Statistics, 6, 65–70.Google Scholar
- Killen, M., Lee-Kim, J., McGlothlin, H., & Stangor, C. (2002). How children and adolescents evaluate gender and racial exclusion. Monographs of the Society for Research in Child Development. Oxford, UK: Blackwell Publishing.Google Scholar
- Newman, L., Wagner, M., Knokey, A.-M., Marder, C., Nagle, K., Shaver, D., & Schwarting, M. (2011). The post-high school outcomes of young adults with disabilities up to 8 years after high school. 2011 [A report from the National Longitudinal Transition Study-2 (NLTS2)]. NCSER 2011–3005. Retrieved from https://nlts2.sri.com/reports/2011_09_02/nlts2_report_2011_09_02_ch2.pdf.
- Opper, S. (1977). Piaget’s clinical method. Journal of Children’s Mathematical Behavior, 1, 90–170.Google Scholar
- Sasson, N. J., Faso, D. J., Nugent, J., Lovell, S., Kennedy, D. P., & Grossman, R. B. (2017). Neurotypical peers are less willing to interact with those with autism based on thin slice judgments. Scientific Reports, 7, 40700. https://doi.org/10.1038/srep40700.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Sasson, N. J., & Morrison, K. E. (2017). First impressions of adults with autism improve with diagnostic disclosure and increased autism knowledge of peers. Autism, 7, 40700.Google Scholar
- Smetana, J. (2006). Social-cognitive domain theory: Consistencies and variations in children’s moral and social judgments. In M. Killen & J. G. Smetana (Eds.), Handbook of moral development (pp. 119–154). Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar
- StataCorp. (2017). Stata statistical software: Release 15. College Station, TX: StataCorp LLC.Google Scholar
- Turiel, E. (1983). The development of social knowledge: Morality and convention. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
- Turiel, E. (2006). Thought, emotions, and social interactional processes in moral development. In M. Killen & J. G. Smetana (Eds.), Handbook of moral development (pp. 7–36). Mahwah: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.Google Scholar