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What is ASD


Difficulty or opportunity?


 Autism (sometimes referred to by the diagnostic term Autism Spectrum Disorder or ASD) is a neurological difference, which creates challenges for individuals relating to social skills, repetitive behaviours, speech and non-verbal communication.

The word ‘spectrum’ is used because of the range & severity of the challenges people with ASD experience.

Also referred to as autism spectrum condition – to remove the focus on disability & instead focus on the strengths, not the challenges.

Since 2013, The following are no longer separate diagnoses but rather all come under the ASD diagnosis:

  • Autism

  • Asperger’s Syndrome 

  • Pervasive Developmental Disorder 

  • Pervasive Developmental Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS)                    


Each individual on the autism spectrum is unique, with their own strengths and challenges. However, research has demonstrated that many individuals on the autism spectrum have exceptional skills (over an above that of individuals without autism) that can be of benefit in any number of jobs. These skills are what Specialisterne focuses on.

Participation in the workforce is important for social inclusion and economic independence, however people with autism spectrum disorders often encounter barriers to entering the labour market, largely due to the traditional recruitment process.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, in 2018 the unemployment rate for people on the autism spectrum was 34.1%, more than three times the rate for people with disability (10.3%) and almost eight times the rate of people without disability (4.6%).

To read more about Autism Spectrum Disorder visit National Autistic Society

Turning negative traits into positive characteristics
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