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Over the next decade, close to half a million people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) will reach adulthood. Research suggests that the career and life outcomes for young adults with ASD are poor as compared with those of the general population. Nevertheless, there is relatively little research on the work experiences of young adults with ASD that focuses on their career aspirations, preparation for work, career experiences, and the barriers associated with their transition into the world of work. Given the large numbers of young adults with ASD who are exiting secondary school and vocational training programs, it is imperative to understand the issues associated with their transition into the world of work. The purpose of this study, which utilizes a survey questionnaire and focus group, is to assess the transition needs and experiences of young adults with ASD as they prepare to enter the workplace. The results indicate that young adults with ASD face significant transition barriers when navigating the world of work and have certain transition needs. Policy implications for the transition needs identified are presented.


This article was originally published in Journal of Business and Management, volume 22, issue 1, in 2016.

Peer Reviewed



Argyros School of Business and Economics, Chapman University


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