Introduction: Although participation is an important outcome of rehabilitation interventions and a critical indicator of quality of life, few studies have focused on the participation patterns of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder in their daily activities or the environmental factors that influence such participation. This study aims to describe the participation characteristics of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder compared with typically developing peers in home, school and community and to identify supporting or hindering environmental features. Method: The Participation and Environment Measure for Children and Youth was administered to 59 parents of adolescents (M = 14.51 years) with autism spectrum disorder and a control group of 188 parents of typically developing adolescents in Israel, and the results were compared. Results: Adolescents with autism spectrum disorder showed lower participation levels at home and school, and much lower levels in the community, preferring solitary activities that involve technology. Their typically developing peers participated in more activities that involved social interaction skill. In addition, parents of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder rated more environmental factors as barriers in all environments. Conclusion: Participation gaps between adolescents with autism spectrum disorder and their typically developing peers should be considered when developing interventions, allocating services and creating policies to meet the unique needs of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
We thank Hadas Shahaf for being part of this research group during her M.Sc. studies in occupational therapy, University of Haifa. We also thank the graduates of the Occupational Therapy Mivchar Program of the University of Haifa who helped with data collection.
© The Author(s) 2019.
- Autism spectrum disorder
- occupational therapy
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Occupational Therapy