I am an Assistant Professor of Occupational Therapy at Trinity College Dublin, and a PhD student at the Children's Research Centre and the School of Psychology Trinity College Dublin. I'm also a busy mum of three children, so life can be pretty hectic! My interest in children and adolescents with ASD stems from my time as an Occupational Therapist in the Lucena Clinic Services. I was always struck how the adolecent years were often a challenge for children and families. The focus of services on early intervention and supporting students in their early school years, can often mean adolescents and their families are left to cope alone. School is such a major part of children's lives and development, with secondary school students spending most of their waking hours in this environment. I believe we need to find out more about how to ensure secondary schools are ASD friendly environments. We need to increase the opportuties for students with ASD to learn, develop and behave in secondary schools which support and understand them as individuals. Hence this research!!
One of the reasons my research is taking a bit longer than first estimated!! But I hope to have this Phd completed by September 2017.