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Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)


Educational Leadership

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Catherine Glascock

Committee Members

Cecil Blankenship, Virginia Foley, Pamela Scott


Autism is the fastest growing serious developmental disability in the United States and more children will be diagnosed with autism this year than with AIDS, diabetes, and cancer combined (Autism Speaks, 2013). Supporting and caring for the child with autism can be devastating socially and emotionally for the families (Neely, Amatea, Doan, & Tannen, 2012). The purpose of this study is to investigate the changes in the life of families that have a child diagnosed with autism.

Four families were interviewed in this qualitative study and each was from East Tennessee. These different families were led by a mother and father, a grandmother, and two divorced mothers.

Through this research, I learned how each family was impacted by autism. Autism dramatically affected each family and each was impacted in many different aspects of life.

Document Type

Dissertation - restricted


Copyright by the authors.