Profiles and longitudinal growth trajectories of teacher-rated academic skills and enablers in autistic children and adolescents

Published December 2023


In non-autistic children, academic skills are associated with academic enablers (motivation, engagement, study/interpersonal skills), but few studies have explored these in autistic children. This study identified profiles of academic skills and enablers in autistic students and explored the trajectory of each profile over time. Teachers completed the Academic Competences Evaluation Scales for autistic children in primary and secondary educational settings annually for 5 years. Latent profile analysis identified six profiles in the primary/younger cohort and seven in the secondary/older cohort. Whilst some profiles showed relative stability across skills and enablers, others profiles were more variable. The profiles remained stable and significantly different from each other over time, with no profile × time interactions identified. Autistic children may show variability across their academic skills and enablers. This highlights the importance of understanding each individual student and their profile of strengths and challenges when planning supports.

Adams, D., Stainer, M., Simpson, K. Paynter, J., & Westerveld, M. (2023). Profiles and Longitudinal Growth Trajectories of Teacher-Rated Academic Skills and Enablers in Autistic Children and Adolescents. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.

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