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Unlocking Opportunities: Empowering Autistic Adults in Vocational Training and Employment Through Assistive Technologies

    Authors

    David Gollasch, Christin Engel, Meinhardt Branig, Jan Schmalfuß-Schwarz & Gerhard Weber

    Conference

    HCI International 2024

    Format

    Full Paper

    Review-Process

    Peer Review

    Reference

    Gollasch, D., Engel, C., Branig, M., Schmalfuß-Schwarz, J., Weber, G. (2024). Unlocking Opportunities: Empowering Autistic Adults in Vocational Training and Employment Through Assistive Technologies. In: Antona, M., Stephanidis, C. (eds) Universal Access in Human-Computer Interaction. HCII 2024. Lecture Notes in Computer Science, vol 14698. Springer, Cham.

    https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-031-60884-1_3

    Zusammenfassung (übersetzt)

    This paper explores the challenges faced by autistic individuals in vocational training and their transition to the general labor market in Germany. It focuses on how assistive technologies (AT) can enhance their employment prospects. The research employs observations and interviews at a Vocational Training Center (VTC) to understand the specific needs of autistic people in workplace settings, particularly office-based environments. The study identifies key challenges, support measures, and factors influencing dropout rates in vocational training. It also highlights the potential benefits of AT in fostering a more inclusive work environment and aiding autistic individuals in overcoming employment barriers. The findings emphasize the need for AT to be adaptable to individual needs and compatible with various work settings, ultimately promoting inclusion and better employment outcomes for people with autism.

    The schematic representation is divided horizontally into three areas: 1. groups of people involved, 2. education and work and 3. autistic person. Vertically, three areas are also color-coded, namely 1. school education (parents and caregivers, diagnostic procedures and medical rehabilitation); 2. vocational training (persons: external medical facilities, cost bearers; assessment of work ability with arrow to vocational preparation with arrow to vocational training center: interdisciplinary exchange and individual rehabilitation plans, adapted working conditions, housing and catering, psychological, medical, social support, peer group, sensitized environment and participants; below is vocational school and IHK examinations at the end of this column); 3. Area: General/first labor market (peer group, psychological, medical and social support, housing and catering; work partners: salary, colleagues/own department, other departments, superiors or reporting obligations)
    Schematic representation of vocational rehabilitation training components and transition to the general labor market.

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