UConn Launches Five-Year 2e/Autism Research Project

It is widely accepted that there can be significant overlap among cognitively diverse people and those with autistic indicators. But the 2e community has been in need of a detailed, long-term study of the intersection between twice-exceptionality and autism spectrum disorder (itself an inaccurate term since “disorder” depends on point of view). The University of Connecticut is set to provide that research.

UConn, and specifically its Renzulli Center for Creativity, Gifted Education, and Talent Development, has announced a five-year program to implement academic and non-academic, evidence-based learning strategies for high school and college students who are both 2e and ASD. Project 2e-ASD intends to bring their research and practical resources to schools, educators, parents, and students.

The goals of Project 2e-ASD include helping young people with 2e and ASD apply to competitive colleges and find success throughout life by pursuing a choice of careers in their areas of interest and helping them to achieve their life goals.

The team includes luminaries in the field such as Drs. Sally Reis, Susan Baum, Joe Madaus, Nick Gelbar, and Susan Carroll, who will serve as project evaluator. “We knew that the numbers of students who have both talents and ASD are increasing,” said Reis, the co-project director who formerly served as a principal investigator for the National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented and a president of the National Association for Gifted Children. The impetus behind the project was to find out how 2e high school students make successful transitions to college. When they reviewed existing research, Reis said they “could not find anything about college success for this population.”

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About Stuart Matranga

Stuart Matranga is an author and journalist who has written for Rolling Stone, Maxim, and other magazines. As a teacher, he specializes in students who are reluctant readers. Stuart has extensive experience teaching and working with twice-exceptional students.