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The outcomes of students with autism spectrum disorder are driving the field to address how secondary education might be optimally designed and delivered. The authors conducted 28 focus groups across four states to explore the contexts, considerations, and complexities associated with delivering and combining evidence-based interventions to meet the needs of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder from the vantage point of 152 practitioners, parents, and other key stakeholders. Participants emphasized the inadequacy of prevailing intervention approaches in secondary schools, underscored the importance of attending to feasibility and alignment with the diverse needs of students with autism spectrum disorder, and stressed the need for broader awareness and training efforts surrounding autism. The authors offer recommendations for designing comprehensive interventions and incorporating stakeholder feedback.


Kucharczyk, S., Reutebuch, C. K., Carter, E. W., Hedges, S., El Zein, F., Fan, H., & Gustafson, J. R. (2015). Addressing the needs of adolescents with autism spectrum disorder: Considerations and complexities for high school interventions. Exceptional Children. Advance online publication. doi:10.1177/0014402914563703

Related Institute

Related Project

Published Date


Funding Source

U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences


Autism Spectrum Disorders

Type of Resource

Journal Article/Book Chapter


General Education Classroom Teacher
School Administrator
Special Education Teacher

Grade Level

High School