Collaboration Struggles in an Engineering Lab: A Case Study About a Student with Autism


My name is Daniel. As an undergraduate mechanical engineering student, I am required to take a design and manufacturing laboratory course. In this course, students work in teams to build devices using mills, lathes, and other manufacturing equipment. I have high-functioning autism spectrum disorder. At the beginning of the term, I spoke with the instructor about my disability and accommodations.

A college student needs a computer accommodation to take her exam. How can I ensure the test is properly supervised?

Discuss the exam format, location, supervision options, and time limit with the student and disabled student services staff. You or a teaching assistant could arrange to supervise the test or the disabled student services office could provide a test proctor as an accommodation.

Where can I learn about challenges and opportunities for veterans with disabilities in postsecondary education?

The short 13-minute video Returning from Service: College and IT Careers for Veterans and the related publication provide an overview of some of the opportunities and challenges faced by veterans with disabilities as they transition to the postsecondary classroom and pursue degrees in computing and information technology fields.

How can I get involved with undergraduate research?

Undergraduate research can provide important and meaningful experiences for students in fields that include those in science and engineering. Research internships present opportunities for undergraduates to gain an exposure to research and consider whether they are interested in research careers and graduate school.

Following are examples of programs that allow undergraduate students with disabilities to become involved in research: