For a real job? Views on the teaching of competence in working life by students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)


  • Marika Mäkinen University of Jyväskylä, Finland



autism spectrum disorder (ASD), employment, preparatory education, communication, participation


In this study, twelve young students on the autism spectrum were interviewed on preparation for working life, employment guidance, the challenges and strengths of the autism spectrum, and suitable teaching methods. Interviews were supported by a structured and illustrated questionnaire. The data were analysed using key statistics. The results showed that, from the students’ perspective, the most important issues in preparation for work are familiarisation with different jobs, guidance in searching for a suitable job, evaluation of the suitability of the working environment, integration of occupational safety into work skills, and acquiring conversational skills in the workplace. The selection of a suitable working environment is clearly emphasised before transitioning to work. Acquiring and keeping a job require investing in social situations and skills in studying. The structuring should be flexible and adaptable according to situations and personal needs. Educationally, social interaction, social skills, and communication should form a coherent whole. The main goal for everyday life ought to be communicative and based on a structure for acquiring different skills. The results can be utilised in a vocational education and training (VET) context, because they support the importance of preparatory education as part of these studies. In addition, the results can also be used in on-the-job learning plans for VET.


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How to Cite

Mäkinen, M. (2021). For a real job? Views on the teaching of competence in working life by students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Nordic Journal of Vocational Education and Training, 11(3), 66–87.



Peer-reviewed research articles