The number of individuals with autism attending college has grown with the increase of autism diagnosis. College students with autism graduate at a lower rate than their typically developed peers. Few studies have examined the phenomenon of college students with autism; instead the focus has been on projecting college performance based on high school challenges. This study explores the lived experiences of successful college students with autism. The participants, who had all completed a Bachelor's degree, described their college years and the lessons they learned. The superordinate themes were becoming self-aware, love of college, and exploring alternate means to socialize.
Keywords: College, autism, autistic spectrum disorders, asperger syndrome, phenomenological, qualitative