Learning Experiences of Young Artists with ASD in a University Enrichment Program
Universal Journal of Educational Research
Assisting every student with special needs to give scope to their talents and to possess healthy personality and mature social skill that advance their careers at their working places is far from being easy. Within the domains of special education, students are placed in relative disadvantage when they bear cultural differences, and mental or physical disabilities. Their development situation should be given more attention from educators, as the disadvantages they bear might jeopardize the full
... jeopardize the full actualization of their potentials. An enrichment program was started at a university for 5 young artists with ASD during 2012 to 2014, courses include: Creative Design, Art Creation, and Expressive Art Therapy. This paper introduced the artworks of the young artists, their learning attitudes and behavior change after engaged the enrichment program are analyzed by qualitative approach. Data was collected with portfolios, classroom observations and interviews. Among the five artists, three of them were interviewed on the topic of class experiences. Teachers' observations on the learning behaviors were also interviewed. Followings listed the main findings: 1. the learning attitudes became more positive and active wherever in or out schools/universities after joining the enrichment program; 2. the program opened the space to manifest creativity, 3. the outstanding performances indicated the artists realized their potentials, and 4. the young artists were more confident and showed less anxiety than before, the interaction among the peers increased through expressive art therapy course.