Free course

Understanding autism

Free statement of participation on completion
Understanding autism
Understanding autism
April 2nd 2021 is World Autism Awareness Day and April is World Autism Awareness Month.

A message from course lead Ilona Roth:

Covid and all the associated restrictions have brought particular challenges for autistic people and their families. This year, of all years, we need to promote understanding of autism, so please use this course as a resource to help you spread awareness. Wishing everyone a swift end to lockdown and happier times ahead.

Learn about autism, a complex and challenging long-term condition for many individuals and their families worldwide, and an aspect of human diversity to others. This free course, Understanding autism, introduces the autism spectrum, how it is experienced by different individuals and families, and why it is a global concern. The course explains how ideas about autism have evolved and explores diagnosis, causes, intervention and life-span development. Widely varying perspectives on autism are illustrated and key societal and cross-cultural issues highlighted.


Understanding autism

Earn this free Open University digital badge if you complete this course! The badge can be displayed, shared and downloaded as a marker of your achievement. The badge is awarded for completing the course and passing the quizzes.

First Published: 26/04/2017

Updated: 02/04/2020

You can start this course right now without signing-up. Click on any of the course content sections below to start at any point in this course.
If you want to be able to track your progress, earn a free Statement of Participation, and access all course quizzes and activities, sign-up.

Course content