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Public attitudes to people with ASD: contact, knowledge and ethnicity

Gemegah, E; Hartas, D; Totsika, V; (2020) Public attitudes to people with ASD: contact, knowledge and ethnicity. Advances in Autism 10.1108/AIA-01-2020-0009. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Purpose: The increase in autism prevalence and presentation in the media suggests a rise in public awareness. This paper aims to explore what factors (contact, knowledge and ethnicity) may be associated to positive attitudes towards individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). / Design/methodology/approach: An online survey examined contact with and knowledge of ASD among Black, Asian and White ethnic groups to predict public attitudes to people with ASD. / Findings: In multiple regression models, the results suggested that the level of contact predicts positive attitudes towards autism when demographic factors were accounted. The level of knowledge about autism were significantly associated to attitudes, but not consistently when demographic factors were accounted. However, differences in knowledge and attitudes to people with ASD were identified amongst Black, Asian and White ethnic groups. / Research limitations/implications: These findings have implications for policy and public health and education campaigns, including ensuring contact and knowledge of autism among the public. / Originality/value: These findings have implications for policy and public health and education campaigns, including ensuring contact and knowledge of autism among the public. Additionally, further effort is required to target public knowledge and attitudes to autism, particularly among ethnic groups. Institutional support tailored to encourage structured and unstructured contact across public domains such as education, health, social and care practices could effectively reduce prejudice between the public and people with ASD over time.

Type: Article
Title: Public attitudes to people with ASD: contact, knowledge and ethnicity
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1108/AIA-01-2020-0009
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1108/AIA-01-2020-0009
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Autism, Intersection, Prejudice/attitudes, Contact, Knowledge, Ethnicity
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Division of Psychiatry
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10114008
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