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Title: How do people understand the role that a diagnosis of an Autism Spectrum Condition plays in their identity? : an interpretative phenomenological analysis
Author: King, Claire
Awarding Body: University of Surrey
Current Institution: University of Surrey
Date of Award: 2015
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As autism spectrum conditions were not recognised by most as diagnosable conditions until the 1980’s (APA, 1980), there are people, already adults by this time, who would not have been diagnosed in childhood and may only receive a diagnosis in adulthood. Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis was used to explore the experiences of five people who had been given a diagnosis on the autism spectrum as adults, in particular their understanding of the role of the diagnosis on their sense of identity. Four superordinate themes were identified: (i) experiences of the diagnostic process, (ii) the search for an explanation for the experience of difference, (iii) diagnosis of an autism spectrum condition as an explanation for oneself and (iv) diagnosis of an autism spectrum condition as an explanation for other people. Diagnosis was important to the participants in this research because it provided an explanation for their experiences of differences, allowed access to support and a way to communicate difficulties to other people. Implications of these findings are discussed in relation to recent UK policies on services for people on the autism spectrum (NICE, 2014).
Supervisor: Gleeson, Kate ; Williams, Emma Sponsor: University of Surrey
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Psych.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available