Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Mindfulness experiences of children who have autistic spectrum disorder and anxiety : an exploratory study
Author: Lambert, Jodie
ISNI:       0000 0004 5352 6583
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2015
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
This qualitative phenomenological study explored the experiences of four children with Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and anxiety (aged 10-13 years) who took part in a mindfulness-based intervention. The research was conducted within a local authority in times of reform in both education and mental health. A systematic literature review indicated that the majority of children with ASD experience difficulties with attention, anxiety, empathy, comprehension and communication within the social world. The research into mindfulness revealed it to have many applications in social and emotional development, attention and general well-being for children and adults. However, there was limited literature regarding mindfulness-based interventions with children on the autistic spectrum. The central research question was ‘what do children with ASD say about their experiences of being part of the mindfulness programme?’ Additional research questions were ‘what do children with ASD say about their life experiences?’ and ‘does anything change in children’s lived experiences during the course of the mindfulness programme?’ The data was collected using semi-structured interviews pre and post intervention and via audio- diaries. Data was analysed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis. The themes that emerged were ‘worries’, ‘perceptions of the self’, ‘relationships’, ‘connecting to the environment’, ‘views of autism’ and ‘perceptions and experiences of mindfulness’. The themes appear to indicate that mindfulness-based approaches may be useful in promoting the psychological well-being of children with ASD. Children reported enjoyment of mindfulness, engagement with the practical and concrete teaching of the intervention, positive changes to their experiences of having autism and worries, feelings of empowerment and resiliency, enjoyment of new experiences and abilities in noticing and accepting change. Therefore, the research identifies positive opportunities for children with ASD to engage with mindfulness-based approaches and it also highlights the role that can be undertaken by the educational psychologist in such interventions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Ed.Ch.Psy.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available